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'Should make it into All Blacks': Peter Umaga-Jensen impresses with first half brace of tries as All Blacks selectors watch on

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(Photo by Masanori Udagawa/Getty Images)

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Don’t be surprised to hear calls for Peter Umaga-Jensen to earn a surprise call-up to the All Blacks squad in the wake of the Hurricanes’ Super Rugby Aotearoa clash with the Chiefs.


The young midfielder put on a clinic in the first half of the round nine Kiwi derby – of which the Hurricanes need to win with a bonus point to keep their faint title hopes alive – in front of a crowd that featured All Blacks selectors Ian Foster, John Plumtree and Grant Fox.

That trio of spectators will no doubt have sat up and taken notice of Umaga-Jensen’s opening half performance, where he stood up in the absence of injured teammate Ngani Laumape to wreak havoc with the Chiefs’ defence.

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Aaron Mauger speaks to media
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Going into Saturday’s clash without having picked up a bonus point at all throughout the competition, Umaga-Jensen led the charge to keeping the Hurricanes’ season intact with an early try inside the first seven minutes.

A sequence of solid build-up play by the hosts from an attacking lineout kept the Chiefs pegged inside their own 22, before halfback TJ Perenara fired a deft flat ball for Umaga-Jensen to run onto at pace.

There was no stopping the imposing 22-year-old, who made easy work of Alex Nankivell and Anton Lienert-Brown to dot down under the posts.


It took only 20 minutes for Umaga-Jensen to double his score tally and continue his good run of form that played a vital role in taking down the Crusaders in Christchurch a fortnight ago.

Running a backline move off an attacking scrum, the former national schoolboy and age-grade star split apart the Chiefs defence with a good running line before setting Wes Goosen away down the left wing.

Playing the role of support player, Umaga-Jensen was on hand to receive a last-ditch offload from Goosen as he was bundled into touch and was quick to dot the ball down despite the tackle attempt of Mitch Karpik.


Twitter was quick to react to Umaga-Jensen’s two-try salvo, with many praising the youngster’s efforts as the Hurricanes stayed alive in the competition for another week by picking up a 31-18 bonus point win over their North Island neighbours.


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