Live Updates: Super Rugby, Blues vs Highlanders

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Blues 33 - 26 Highlanders 

Stay tuned for the match wrap. 


80 min: The hooter goes, the Highlanders are close. Knock on!! The Blues win. It's over. 

76 min: Huge scrum from the Blues and they have an advantage, the kick for goal is good and the Blues lead by seven. Blues 33-26 Highlanders. 

74 min: TRY - Blues, composure from the Blues who keep the ball in hand and play great rugby. It's Patrick Tuipulotu who scores. Kick is good. Blues 30-26 Highlanders. 

69 min: Really good work from the Highlanders who force the turnover.

68 min: Big chance for the Blues here, lineout on the 10m line. 

68 min: Yellow card for Waisake Naholo for a dangerous tackle on Tom Robinson. 

66 min: The Blues get into a big tangle and they're called for obstruction. 

63 min: A massive scrum won by the Highlanders and they will take the three. Blues 23-26 Highlanders.

62 min: Really good work from Akira Ioane and he gets the turnover for the Blues. 

61 min: Penalty to the Highlanders, kick for touch. 

56 min: TRY - Blues, a great run from the Blues and it's Melani Nanai who finishes it off. Kick is wide. Blues 23-23 Highlanders. 

54 min: TRY - Highlanders, a huge up and under kick from Plummer goes striaght up and it's the Highlanders winger who claims the ball and runs over the line. Great work from Li. Kick is good. Blues 18-23 Highlanders.

50 min: Shocking kick from Ben Smith and it leaves the Blues in a really good position to score, kick is good. Blues 18-16 Highlanders. 

48 min: Highlanders win a penalty and will look for the first points of the second half. It's good.  Blues 15-16 Highlanders. 

47 min: Good bit of work from the Landers but a knock on ends all hope. 

44 min: Tom Robinson scores after a great offload from Nanani, but it's called back for a forward pass. 

41 min: Back underway at Eden Park.


38 min: Blues win a penalty now and will look to score again before the hooter. 

37 min: The Highlanders win a penalty and Marty Banks makes no mistake with the kick. Blues 15-13 Highlanders. 

33 min: TRY - Blues, after great work at the breakdown Melani Nanai makes the breakthrough after a superb step. The inform Rieko Ioane finishes it off. Kick is good. Blues 15 - 10 Highlanders.

32 min: Messy from the Blues after scrum, a knock on - Highlanders ball. 

29 min: Great run from Ben Smith, he gets the visitors out of trouble and onto the front foot - but they knock it on, Blues scrum. 

27 min: Penalty won by the Highlanders and Aaron Smith takes the tap but is tackled. 

23 min: Another penalty for the Blues - another kick at goal, this one is good. Blues 8-10 Highlanders.

20 min: Blues earn a penalty about 45m out.  Kick for goal coming, It's wide. 

18 min: TRY - Highlanders, dominance from the Southerners scrum gives Luke Whitelock an easy try, great try. Kick is good. Blues 5 - 10 Highlanders

16 min: Penalty to the Highlanders out in front. 

14 min: Scrum in a really good position here for the Highlanders, who are looking to hit back.

That is the first try the Blues have scored in the opening 20 mins all year. 

10 min: TRY - Blues, Rieko Ioane in full flight for the Blues, he busts through the line and steps Naholo to go over for the first try. Kick is wide. Blues 5 - 3 Highlanders. 

9 min: Banks clears and the Blues will have the ball on the halway line. 

8 min: Pari Pari Parkinson works well to the ball and holds Ioane up to create the maul - Landers scrum. 

6 min: Great work at scrum time from the Blues and they win the ball - then they win a penalty, kick for touch. 

5 min: Really good attack from the Blues as James Parsons makes a break - but it's Akira Ioane who knocks the ball on.

1 min: Kick off here at Eden Park. 

2 min: Early penalty for the Highlanders. Kick for goal coming, it's good from Marty Banks. 


Kia ora, good evening and welcome to Newshub's coverage of the Super Rugby match between the Blues and the Highlanders from Eden Park. 

Neither side played last week - the Blues were on their bye week and the Highlanders game against the Crusaders was cancelled after the Christchurch mosque shootings. 

Pre-game chat: Ma'a Nonu returns for Blues against Highlanders

Midfielder Ma'a Nonu will return to the starting line-up for the Blues clash with the Highlanders at Eden Park on Friday.

Sonny Bill Williams will not feature for the team, opting to instead head to Christchurch to help support the Muslim community in the wake of last week's tragedy. His absence will count as one of his All Blacks-enforced rest weeks.

Assistant coach Tom Coventry said they anticipated Williams' intentions and were completely on board with the decision.

"We were going to ask Sonny if he'd like to go," Coventry confirmed. "We were all in agreeance and it was a pretty short conversation. We all knew how hard he took it.

"We really admire what he's standing for and he has our best wishes. It's just a sign of Sonny having a really caring side. Rugby is important to everyone but, at the end of the day, it's just a game."

The only change in the forward pack sees Alex Hodgman return to the loosehead, after missing the win over the Sunwolves with a minor injury.

He'll partner the strong-scrummaging Sione Mafileo, with Karl Tu'inukuafe to come off a powerful bench that includes a host of All Blacks, including the likes of Patrick Tuipulotu and Ofa Tuungafasi.

Loose forward Blake Gibson will lead the side in the number seven jersey, after impressing in his return from injury. That shifts Dalton Papali'i to the bench.

TAB Odds: Blues  $2.26  Highlanders  $1.62

Blues: 1-Alex Hodgman, 2-James Parsons, 3-Sione Mafileo, 4-Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 5-Josh Goodhue, 6-Tom Robinson, 7-Blake Gibson, 8-Akira Ioane, 9-Jonathan Ruru, 10-Harry Plummer, 11-Rieko Ioane, 12-Ma'a Nonu, 13-TJ Faiane, 14-Tanielu Tele'a, 15-Melani Nanai

Reserves: 16-Leni Apisai, 17-Ofa Tuungafasi, 18-Karl Tu'inukuafe i, 19-Patrick Tuipulotu, 20-Dalton Papalii, 21-Augustine Pulu, 22-Otere Black, 23-Levi Aumua or Matt Duffie

Highlanders: 1-Ayden Johnstone, 2-Liam Coltman, 3-Tyrel Lomax, 4-Pari Pari Parkinson, 5-Tom Franklin, 6-Shannon Frizell, 7-Dillon Hunt, 8-Luke Whitelock (cc), 9-Aaron Smith, 10-Marty Banks, 11-Tevita Li, 12-Thomas Umaga-Jensen, 13-Patelesio Tomkinson, 14-Waisake Naholo, 15-Ben Smith (cc)

Reserves: 16-Ray Niuia, 17-Daniel Lienert-Brown, 18-Siate Tokolahi, 19-Josh Dickson, 20-Jackson Hemopo, 21-Folau Fakatava, 22-Josh Ioane, 23-Richard Buckman



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