As it happened: Highlanders vs French Barbarians


80mins: FRENCH BARBARIANS TRY- BONNEVAL: Highlanders not done just yet and are up over halfway as the hooter sounds. They want more but a loose ball is turned over for the Baabaas to have the last say. Penaud breaks out and he's away! He finds Bonneval and the left winger crosses to score the try.

78mins: HIGHLANDERS TRY - THOMPSONParkinson has a crack and it's a strong run up the middle. Highlanders turn it over though at the ruck before concede the penalty. Baabaas take the tap but lose it almost immediately. Highlanders go wide, Buckman's in space down the right wing, he finds Thompson on the inside and he's in for the try,

76mins: Highlanders try to breakout from inside the 22m. Thompson tries the kick ahead but French Baabaas get back to clean up before winning the penalty.

74mins: Baabaas win the lineout just five metres out and try the maul and almost go over but incredible defence forces the knock on. They looked certain to score.

72mins: French Baabaas look to attack from the scrum on halfway. They win the penalty and a further 10m after a Landers player back-chatted the ref.

70mins: Baabaas try the drive but it's well contained before they clear down field. There's a stop in play with a couple of players down and being attended to.

68mins: Highlanders looking to pile on the misery and Buckman's in space down the right wing! He's got gas but he's cut down in a great tackle to force him into touch.

66mins: HIGHLANDERS TRY - PLEASANTS-TATE: Highlanders win the lineout just five out, and they drive! They're inching closer and they're over! It's the replacement prop, Pleasants-Tate with the spoils.

64mins: Baabaas trying to break out from their own half, but it's messy and they're not really going anywhere before they concede the penalty for not releasing.

62mins: HIGHLANDERS TRY - SOPOAGA: Parkinson wins the lineout and the Landers try the drive. They break left, French Baabaas come up quickly, Thompson spots it and puts Sopoaga in untouched for the try. 

60mins: Landers go right and it's Li again with the ball. Baabaas up too quickly and are penalised again. We'll have a lineout this time. Baabaas somehow holding out.

58mins: Landers win the free-kick and take the tap Li to charge. They win another penalty and we'll have another scrum. Pressure mounting.

56mins: Li has a bit of space down the left wing, it closes quickly so he tries to find Sopoaga with the inside ball but he's tackled into touch. Good idea, just not enough room. Baabaas throw isn't straight so Highlanders scrum just five out.

54mins: Thompson beats a couple before Dixon makes a hard charge before Dumora is penalised for not rolling away. Ioane can't find touch however.

52mins: Thompson tries the get on the outside but he's well tackled. Li has a charge but can't go anywhere before Renton clears. Dumora finds touch but Ioane takes it quickly before kicking down field.

50mins: Baabaas looking to hit back now but Thompson keeps them honest with a huge hit in the midfield. They concede the penalty for holding on and Renton takes the tap, Elliot Dixon tries the cross-kick for Li but he loses it into touch.

48mins: HIGHLANDERS TRY - MCKAY: There's space for Faddes down the right before he's tackled over the French 10m. Highlanders taking it up through their forwards and draw the penalty advantage. There's numbers out wide, Dixon pops the pass over the top for McKay, he steps in before going out and scores in the corner.

46mins: Ainley wins the lineout and Buckman takes it up the middle before the ball is knocked on by a Baabaa. It was Sanconnie who got it hand on it in the tackle.

44mins: Highlanders win their own scrum and actually win the penalty after Sobela left early. The visitors were piling the pressure on.

42mins: Highlanders make a hash of the restart after Faddes knocked on. Baabaas go wide from the scrum and Dumora's kick is tapped back their way. They try it again but this time knock on.

HALFTIME: Highlanders pile the pressure on at the scrum and win the penalty. They pack down once more, pressure's on and break left but they knock on in close quarters. Baabaas want more before the break but sanity prevails and the kick it out.

38mins: Landers try the drive from the lineout win but they're go sideways so they break away. Ash Dixon is wrapped up well and they turn it over.

36mins: Highlanders show great touch down the left wing before the kick through is chased hard but Daubanga does well to win the race before clearing. Sobele is penalised for going high in the tackle and Sopoaga finds touch for the lineout about seven metres out.

34mins: Seiuli smashes Sobela but the Baabaas keep possession before Dumora clears low down field and Sopoaga returns it for the fullback to give it straight back.

32mins: Baabaas manage to hang onto the lineout throw. They're keeping it tight and force the penalty as Lentjes is pinged for not rolling away. Doussain lines up the penalty but it's away to the right.

30mins: Sopoaga cuts inside and the Landers are just seven or so metres out. Seiuli almost goes over but they lose it just a metre out before Dumora clears. Highlanders look to counter but Tanga Mangene is over the ball and forces the penalty.

28mins: Bethune has a crack but his support player at the breakdown is straight off his feet and concedes the penalty. Highlanders lineout inside the visitors' 22m.

26mins: Highlanders try the shove but Dixon changes his position and he's penalised. A waste of an opportunity. Doussain finds touch for the lineout.

24mins: McKay straightens and he's just tackled 10 metres out. Dixon makes a strong run before Ainley has a charge. They pick and go and win the penalty for offside. They'll pack down.

22mins: Doussain tries the bomb inside the 'Landers 22m but McKay is up to it and takes the catch before clearing. Baabaas have a crack out wide but lose it immediately in contact. Highlanders almost score on the counter from a Renton break, but Faddes' pass is intercepted.

20mins: Highlanders knock on the restart and it comes back for the Baabaas before Buckman is penalised for going off his feet. It's an overthrow from the lineout however and Faddes clears.

18mins: HIGHLANDERS TRY - LENTJES: Parkinson wins the lineout and the Landers drive before winning the penalty. They'll have another crack. They drive once more, inching closer and they're over! Lentjes comes up with the try!

16mins: Daubanga looks to be away down the right wing from the scrum but ref calls them back as his teammate made room for him by holding a 'Landers player back.

14mins: French Baabaas fluff the take on the restart and Li ALMOST comes away with it but he can't quit hang on.

13mins: Baabaas drive once and more and again, make easy metres to force the penalty. Ref gives them a talking to. Doussain will line up a shot at goal and he nails it.

11mins: Baabaas look to maul once more and make good metres before the Highlanders drag it to ground to once again force the turnover. McKay gets on the outside but he can't link up with Buckman and Thompson is penalised for being offside.

9mins: Baabaas looking to out-muscle their opponents on attack, Penaud has a go head on but Dixon's up to it and holds him up to force the turnover.

7mins: Baabaas this time win the lineout and try the drive. They're making easy metres and win the penalty. Dumaro finds touch inside the 22m for another crack.

5mins: Seiuli takes out the halfback at the breakdown and concedes the penalty. Doussain finds touch inside the 22m for an attack lineout but the throw isn't straight.

3mins: Highlanders look to break out from their own 22m but McKay decides to put boot to ball and finds touch just over halfway.

1mins: Sopoaga gets us underway and the Baabaas take it in rather uncomfortably before Penaud breaks out! He beats a couple before finally being tackled on the 'Landers 22m. Doussain has a crack but knocks on.

7:34pm: Dixon offers up a sword to opposing captain, Doussain. Nice touch. Let's go!

7:31pm: Just the anthems to come now. Just a few minutes away from kick-off.

7:30pm: Now for the home team to make their way onto the paddock. Ash Dixon leads out his players.

7:27pm: It's a cold, cold night in the deep south. Baabaas making their way out now.

7:25pm: Sopoaga has another chance to show just what NZ will be missing once he heads north. He should shine this game.

7:21pm: Welcome back to another weekend of NZ vs France as the Highlanders take on the French Baabaas. 

Kia ora and welcome to Rugby Park in Invercargill as the Highlanders play host to the French Barbarians.

The tourists were soundly beaten by the Crusaders last week in a high-scoring affair, and it doesn't get any easier tonight.

The Highlanders are without their All Blacks but still boast a side consisting the likes of Lima Sopoaga, Elliot Dixon and Rob Thompson.

We bring you live streaming written commentary, (BE SURE TO REFRESH YOUR BROWSER), and all the action.

Commentary will start around 7.20pm.


Josh McKay, Matt Faddes, Rob Thompson, Richard Buckman, Tevita Li, Lima Sopoaga (co-captain), Josh Renton, Elliot Dixon, James Lentjes, Josh Dickson, Paripari Parkinson, Alex Ainley, Siate Tokolahi, Ash Dixon (co- captain), Aki Seiuli.

Replacements: Greg Pleasants-Tate, Guy Millar, Tyrel Lomax, Dan Pryor, Marino Mikaele Tu’u, Kayne Hammington, Josh Ioane, Thomas Umaga-Jensen.

French Barbarians
Julien Dumora, Arthur Retiere, Damian Penaud, Pierre Fouyssac, Hugo Bonneval, Jean Marc Doussain (captain), Thibault Daubanga,
Fabien Sanconnie, Patrick Sobela, Yoan Tanga Mangene, Swan Rebbadj, Florian Veraeghe, Sebastian Tafifenua, Quentin Lespiauca-Brettes, Quentin Bethune.

Replacements: Julien Marchand, Antoine Tichit, Pierre Bougarit, Thomas Jolmes, Judicael Cancoriet, Francois Cros, Alexis Bales, Emerick Seitiano.

Highlanders $1.15 French Barbarians $5.00



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