Super Rugby Trans-Tasman: Hurricanes thrash Western Force to continue NZ sides' dominance

The Hurricanes have continued their perfect start to the Super Rugby Trans-Tasman season with a 43-6 thrashing of the Western Force at McLean Park in Napier. 

After two comfortable victories against the Waratahs and the Melbourne Rebels, the Hurricanes took on the Western Force who barely tested the Hurricanes after pushing the Chiefs and Highlanders close in the opening two rounds.

The home side welcomed back Ardie Savea - via the bench - and rested Dane Coles as they handed Reed Prinsep the captaincy to become the 20th captain of the Hurricanes in front of 9,226 fans in Napier.   

The home side produced a clinical performance to record their third straight bonus-point victory and move them to the top of the points table thanks to their biggest winning margin against the Force in their history. 

The visitors -  who were playing their first match in New Zealand since 2017 - made the better start contest when Argentinian international Domingo Miotti converted two penalty goals to give the Force an early lead after 11 minutes.

The Hurricanes hit back three minutes later when Asafo Aumua gathered an overthrown Force lineout and fended off Miotti to sprint 70-metres to put the home side in front. 

The Hurricanes thought they had their second just minutes later when Salesi Rayasi crashed over but it was ruled out after he pushed Force halfback Timas Cubelli in the back in the lead up to the try. 

The big wing made amends just five minutes later, Rayasi finished acrobatically in the corner after a perfect long cut-out pass from Peter Umaga-Jensen.

The home side finished the half with a bang when Du'Plessis Kirifi punished a Force turnover to score the Hurricanes third and hand his side a 19-6 lead at the break. 

The Hurricanes stormed out for the sheds for the second half, when Wes Goosen capped off great interplay from the backs to use his speed to grab the home side's fourth try of the evening.

The Forces' night went from bad to worse. The visitors were hot on the attack metres from the Hurricanes line when replacement halfback Ian Prior fired a wide cut-out pass but only found Rayasi. 

The Hurricanes wing gathered and sprinted 80-metres untouched to grab his second of the evening and extend the Hurricanes lead to 25 points. 

The Force looked like they had their first try of the evening when former Hurricanes player Jeremy Thrush finished off a perfect lineout maul but the television match official ruled it out for obstruction. 

Just a minute later, the Hurricanes made the Force pay when Barrett chip over the top to Ardie Savea who gather and offloaded to Ngani Laumape who grabbed the home side's sixth try of the evening. 

The home side finished the night in style when Jordie Barrett finished off great interplay from backs to tip-toe down the sideline after a great offload to Goosen to round out the seven try to zero victory. 

The Hurricanes move to the top of the table and will stay there unless the Blues can register a bonus point victory against the Brumbies on Saturday. 

The side from the capital will travel to Canberra next Saturday when they face the Brumbies while the Force stay in New Zealand to face the Crusaders.

Hurricanes 43 (Aumua, 2 Rayasi, Kirifi, Goosen, Laumape, Barrett tries; Barrett 4 conversions) bt Force 6 (Miotti 2 penalty goals)