The Hurricanes were reduced to 12 men in the second half on Saturday after after prop Tyrel Lomax was shown a red card for a shoulder charge, flanker Vaea Fifita was sin-binned for a similar offence and fullback Jordie Barrett received a yellow card for a deliberate knock on which also conceded a penalty try.
In spite of all of those disadvantages, the Hurricanes managed to stay in the game and even took the lead 15-14 with a try after Lomax had left the field.
The Blues managed to edge ahead with the penalty that resulted from Fifita’s yellow card, then relied on the penalty try conceded by Barrett to beat the Hurricanes for the first time in their last nine meetings.
It was an indictment on the Blues that even when they held a three-man advantage, they couldn’t produce an actual scoring play.
Near the e nd, with the Hurricanes still reduced to 12 men the Blues incredibly attempted a drop kick at goal.
“We didn’t do ourselves any favours,” Hurricanes captain T.J. Perenara admitted.
“Obviously we were down to 12 players at one stage there and you can’t win football games like that so we’ve got to right those wrongs and give ourselves a chance to win those football games.”
The Hurricanes lost their temper and their discipline in the second half, feeling they had been unfairly treated.
The incident that led to Lomax’s dismissal was referred to referee Mike Fraser by his TMO and Fraser rated it a red card offence because Lomax led with his shoulder, didn’t wrap his arms and made contact with the head.
The Blues were awarded tries in each half which were also called into question.
In the first half backrower Akira Ioane was judged to have scored on the basis of Fraser’s on-field call, though replays suggested he grounded the ball just short of the line.
Winger Mark Telea scored in the left-hand corner early in the second half, Fraser again made the on-field call of try and replays showed Telea had put his hand in touch at almost the same moment he grounded the ball.
The match didn’t live up the promise created when the Hurricanes scored a try through winger Ben Lam inside two minutes, a movement in which Fifita threw the final pass.
It lost its structure as both teams struggled to assert themselves at set pieces or retain possession.
– AAPMore News
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