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Blues beat Waratahs in Auckland

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The Blues have won their last five Super Rugby games on the bounce against the NSW Waratahs, of which only one has been by a margin of greater than seven points on the day.

Only once in Super Rugby history have the NSW Waratahs won an away game against the Blues in Super Rugby (27-22 in Round 7, 2009); all their 11 remaining attempts have ended in defeat.

Match detail

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1.00: PEEEEP! We are underway at Eden Park in Auckland, New Zealand.

3.00: Zarn Sullivan takes a wonderful high ball to kickstart a counter-attack from deep inside the Blues’ half.

4.00: PENALTY! Otere Black opens the scoring. 3-0

5.00: Jack Whetton is on for Max Douglas, who leaves the field holding his wrist.

6.00: The Waratahs are under the pump. Finlay Christie’s break set up the attack before the Blues were held up over the line; Tom Robertson opts for a scrum under the posts after another penalty.

8.00: TRY! Bryce Heem steps James Turner and runs over Jake Gordon to score near the corner. 8-0

9.00: MISS! Black cannot add the extras. 8-0

12.00: The Tahs, like all Australian teams, continue to make the same errors by not kicking the ball out. Will Harrison’s kick ends up costing the Sydney side a penalty, which Black puts out in the corner.

14.00: Kurt Eklund misses his jumper, and the Tahs clear to their 10m.

16.00: Akira Ioane’s linebreak almost sees Blake Gibson score except for some wonderful cover defending by the Waratahs, who win a penalty and clear.

18.00: TJ Faiane’s clearance kick is charged down, but the Blues recover and manage to get out of jail.

20.00: Faiane’s kick-pass goes out over the in-goal. Heem started the counter-attack after another stray pass by the Waratahs. Rieko Ioane carried before offloading to the support runner, but Faiane’s kick was wayward.

23.00: A long break because of a few injuries – which is the theme of this game – ends with a Blues scrum.

24.00: The Waratahs are dropping like flies. Mark Nawaqanitawase replaces Turner on the wing and Jack Maddocks has moved to fullback.

25.00: The Tahs collapse the scrum, Black kicks to the 22.

27.00: Akira Ioane knocks on after taking his eyes off the ball. The Blues are slack, they are too lackluster because they seem to think this is going to be a cakewalk.

28.00: TRY! Heem gathers a deflected kick, races from his own half to the opposition’s 22 before putting away Tom Robinson on the sideline. 13-0

29.00: CONVERSION! Black adds the extras. 15-0

30.00: Scrum to the Tahs.

31.00: TRY! Angus Bell slips two tackles and runs 23 metres to score next to the poles. Bell will be saying he ran 63 metres for that. 15-5

32.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 15-7

33.00: Lineout to the Blues on the halfway line.

34.00: TRY! Jake Gordon intercepts a loose Finlay Christie pass and runs 51 metres to score under the sticks. 15-12

35.00: CONVERSION! Will Harrison adds the two. 15-14

37.00: Eklund goes close, but is tackled short of the line after the Blues driving maul almost went into touch. The Blues, however, are awarded another penalty and will kick to the corner.

38.00: TRY! Kurt Eklund gets his try, the hooker flopping over the chalk after another powerful maul. 20-14

38.00: CONVERSION! Black makes no mistake. 22-14

40.00: Bell, looking for a second try, is held up on the Blues’ line.

The halftime score was Blues 22 NSW Waratahs 14

41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in the City of Sails.

43.00: Two penalties in quick succession sees the Tahs set up inside the Blues’ 22.

45.00: The Tahs butcher a good opportunity.

49.00: TRY! Rieko Ioane picks up the ball and goes straight through the ruck to race away unchallenged to score. 27-14

50.00: CONVERSION! Black splits the uprights. 29-14

54.00; The Waratahs’ lineout is starting to breakdown, the Blues are all over the Aussies, and looking for the killer strike.

57.00: YELLOW CARD! Harry Johnson-Holmes is sent to the bin for sacking the maul. 29-14

58.00: PENALTY TRY! The referee has no option but to run under the posts and award seven after the Blues dismantled the Tahs’ scrum. 36-14

62.00: TRY! Dave Porecki crashes over. 36-19

64.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 36-21

66.00: The Blues have been disappointing tonight, they should really have put this game to bed in the first half, but they played too fast and loose.

68.00: TRY! Heem has another, sliding over in the corner after Donaldson’s intercept and turnover. 41-21

69.00: MISS! Black cannot convert. 41-21

73.00: It’s all Blues, who need another try to safeguard the bonus point.

75.00: Lineout to the Tahs inside their half.

78.00: TRY! Heem has a hat-trick after Black’s intercept. 46-21

79.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good by Black. 48-21

82.00: A Tahs scrum sets up a final attack.

83.00: Dalton Papalii wins the game-ending penalty. Game over!


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The final score is Blues 48 (22) Waratahs 21 (14)


Tries – Heem (3), Robinson, Eklund, R. Ioane, Penalty try
Pen – Black
Con – Black (4)
Drop –
Cards –

Tries – Bell, Gordon, Porecki
Pen –
Con – Harrison (3)
Drop –
Cards – Johnson-Holmes (Yellow, 57′)

Match Officials
Referee: Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 1: Angus Mabey
Assistant Ref 2: Lauen Jenner
TMO: Shane McDermott



15 Zarn Sullivan, 14 Bryce Heem, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 TJ Faiane, 11 AJ Lam, 10 Otere Black, 9 Finlay Christie, 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Blake Gibson, 6 Tom Robinson (captain), 5 Josh Goodhue, 4 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 3 Ofa Tuungafasi, 2 Kurt Eklund, 1 Karl Tu’inukuafe

 16 Soane Vikena, 17 Alex Hodgman, 18 Marcel Renata, 19 Patrick Tuipulotu, 20 Dalton Papalii, 21 Sam Nock, 22 Harry Plummer, 23 Jacob Ratumaitavuki-Kneepkens

NSW Waratahs

15 Will Harrison, 14 Jack Maddocks, 13 Alex Newsome, 12 Lalakai Foketi, 11 James Turner, 10 Ben Donaldson, 9 Jake Gordon (captain), 8 William Harris, 7 Charlie Gamble, 6 Lachlan Swinton, 5 Max Douglas, 4 Hugh Sinclair, 3 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 2 Dave Porecki, 1 Angus Bell

: 16 Joe Cotton, 17 Tetera Faulkner, 18 Darcy Breen, 19 Jack Whetton, 20 Carlo Tizzano, 21 Jack Dempsey, 22 Jack Grant, 23 Mark Nawaqanitawase

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