The Hurricanes beat the Crusaders 31-26 in their Super Rugby pre-season fixture at the Levin Domain on Friday.
The Hurricanes won with a withering second half comeback.
The Crusaders got off to a hot start and capitalised on some early Hurricanes errors and raced to a 21-0 lead with barely 15 minutes on the clock. No. 8 Cullen Grace and first five Fergus Burke (2) found the whitewash.
The Hurricanes earned a penalty and lineout in the corner and finally scored their first try to Wellington flanker Du Plessis Kirifi on the stroke of halftime. The Crusaders led 21-7 at the interval.
The Crusaders were soon on to attack early in the second half and they went wide from a scrum near the line and scored outwide to increase their lead to 26-7.
Both sides carried big squads and plenty of changes were made. The Hurricanes replacements were quickly into the game and the home side laid on four consecutive tries to draw level at 26-26 and then take the lead at 31-26.
A tense finish saw the Hurricanes hold on over the final seven minutes and take the win.
All the tries of the match below:
Scores. At Levin Domain, Levin: Hurricanes 31 (Du’Plessis Kirifi, Asafo Aumua, Matt Whaanga, Cam Roigard, Brayden Iose tries, Jordie Barrett, Harry Godfrey 2 con) Crusaders 26 (Cullen Grace, Fergus Burke, Melani Nanai tries, Burke 3 con). Halftime: 7-21.