Super Rugby

Umaga changes Blues backline

Bryn Gatland returns to start at first five, with Stephen Perofeta dropping back to fullback.

Rieko Ioane moves back to his accustomed left wing with TJ Faiane and Orbyn Leger paired in the midfield.

Jimmy Tupou moves to lock, with Dalton Papalii starting on the flank.

Blues: 1. Pauliasi Manu, 2. James Parsons, 3. Ofa Tuungafasi/Mike Tamoaieta, 4. Patrick Tuipulotu, 5. Jimmy Tupou, 6. Dalton Papalii, 7. Kara Pryor, 8. Akira Ioane; 9. Jonathan Ruru, 10. Bryn Gatland, 11. Rieko Ioane, 12. TJ Faiane, 13. Orbyn Leger, 14. Jordan Hyland,15. Stephen Perofeta.

Sharks too good for the Blues

Coming off the bye, the Blues were comprehensively outplayed, with poor tackling and an inability to secure quality ball allowing the Sharks to open out a 26-7 halftime lead.

The Aucklanders hit back in the second spell with three tries in the space of eight minutes but could find no answer to a masterful display from Sharks fly- half Robert du Preez.

The 24-year-old playmaker kicked flawlessly, nailing seven penalties and six conversions as well as scoring a try of his own to total 38 points for the match.

Wainui try secures tight Chiefs win over Highlanders

Wainui gave his side the lead for good after a topsy-turvy encounter on the scoreboard even though the home side had dominated much of the possession and territory.

Fullback Solomon Alaimalo and hooker Nathan Harris had scored either side of half time to give the home side a 20-7 lead only for the visitors to come storming back with tries to Tevita Li and Sio Tomkinson and take a two-point lead with about 20 minutes remaining.

Hurricanes romp past Rebels in Melbourne

First-five Beauden Barrett, number eight Gareth Evans and inside centre Ngani Laumape also crossed for the Hurricanes, who trailed 19-8 after 30 minutes before running over the top of the tiring home side.

The result takes the Hurricanes to the top of the New Zealand Conference.

The Rebels' only try was scored by lock Matt Philip and flyhalf Jack Debreczeni added four penalties.

Highlanders beat Stormers in Dunedin

The Stormers have lost their past 10 games in New Zealand, and have just one win from four matches this season.

The late loss of hooker Ash Dixon, ruled out after a head knock at training, had little effect on the Highlanders, with Liam Coltman slotting in efficiently.

Coming off the bye, their scrum was solid and their work at the breakdown was relentless. While handling errors meant second-half tries went begging, the Highlanders always looked in control.

Coleman ruled out of clash with Brumbies

The star lock was an integral part of Melbourne's win over the Sunwolves, wreaking havoc at lineout time and playing an understated hand in the Rebels attack.

But he pulled up particularly sore after the match and has since been ruled out of the Australian Conference blockbuster, with Ross Haylett-Petty getting the nod in the second row alongside Matt Philip.

Outside of the forced change, coach Dave Wessels has stuck solid with the starting XV that has claimed convincing wins through the opening fortnight.

Chiefs notch up another win over battling Blues

The Chiefs had been trailing the Super Rugby encounter 14-10 at halftime before Cane and scrumhalf Brad Weber touched down within two minutes of each other early in the second half, turning the game towards the visitors.

Colin Cooper's injury-riddled side then withstood a furious onslaught from the hosts, who had several opportunities to seal victory in the final minutes but lacked the composure to take them.

The Chiefs have not lost to their neighbours since March 2011, a run of 13 matches. It is the longest unbeaten run against one side by another in Super Rugby.

Chiefs need to be more clinical

The limping visitors will take a no-excuse approach into Friday's match at Eden Park featuring two teams seeking to avoid twin losses to start their season.

Both fell short in the South Island last weekend - the Blues beaten 41-34 by the Highlanders before the Chiefs conceded late tries in a 45-23 lesson from defending champions the Crusaders.

Assistant coach Neil Barnes believes that score was unflattering and doesn't want to alter much.

Highlanders beat Blues 41-34

The Highlanders trailed 31-24 when Blues replacement flanker Antonio Kiri Kiri was yellow carded by Jamie Nutbrown for a high tackle and the home side seized on the opportunity to take a lead they did not relinquish.

Walden's centre partner Rob Thompson also grabbed two tries, while flyhalf Bryn Gatland, winger Matt Duffie and number eight Akira Ioane (two) replied for the visitors.

Neither team was perfect in their first competitive match of the season as they struggled with the new laws at the breakdown that does not allow defenders to attack the ball.

Penalty try sinks Chiefs in Christchurch

It was a game that once again showcased the incredible array of talent in the New Zealand Super Rugby conference. However, while both sides produced glimpses of unbelievable skill, there was also enough ill-discipline from both sides to cause some concern for coaches Scott Robertson and Colin Cooper.

The first half started brightly for the Chiefs, who almost scored off the opening passage through a McKenzie break. However, that was basically the last they saw of the ball for the next 12 minutes.