Barrett brothers fire Hurricanes to win over Blues

Wellington (AFP) –


Beauden and Jordie Barrett inspired Wellington to a dogged 22-12 victory over the Auckland Blues at Eden Park on Friday, maintaining the Hurricanes' recent stranglehold over their North Island rivals.

Each brother scored a try, with Jordie producing a defensive masterclass and Beauden making the Hurricanes attacking chances count in a Super Rugby match the Blues dominated for long periods.

The Aucklanders enjoyed 60 percent possession, but were repeatedly denied by desperate defence as the Hurricanes posted their fifth straight victory -- giving them a record second only to competition leaders Canterbury Crusaders.

"We've won a few tight games and that builds character," captain TJ Perenara said.

"We were probably a little bit inaccurate around the middle of the park and that's not good enough for us."

It was the Blues' fourth consecutive loss and their eighth straight against the Hurricanes, a sequence stretching back to March 2015.

Blues fly-half Sam Nock opened the scoring with a try in the ninth minute, swooping on Patrick Tuipulotu's pass after the lock ran over Beauden Barrett to burst through the Hurricanes' line.

The 'Canes scored against the run of play when Ngani Laumape stole the ball and sent Ben Lam off for a try with his first touch of the match.

Jordie Barrett, playing at fullback, made two try-saving tackles to deny the Blues, then scored at the other end to give his chances of World Cup selection a timely boost.

The Blues were camped on the Hurricanes danger zone early in the second half as Wellington conceded a string of penalties, culminating in a yellow card for Jeff Toomaga-Allen.

The pressure finally paid off when Dalton Papalii crossed in the corner in the 60th minute, although a missed conversion kept the Hurricanes ahead 14-12.

Another period of Blues dominance followed, but the Hurricanes again came out on top when Beauden Barrett snared a stray James parsons pass and scampered away for an intercept try.

Jordie then sealed the win with a long-range penalty.