WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - JUNE 28: Blade Thomson of the Hurricanes is tackled during the round 17 Super Rugby match between the Hurricanes and the Crusaders at Westpac Stadium on June 28, 2014 in Wellington, New Zealand. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)


Wellington - Lock Blade Thomson scored two tries, one from more than 50 metres, as the Wellington Hurricanes kept their playoffs chances alive with a 16-9 victory over the Canterbury Crusaders in their Super Rugby clash at Wellington Regional Stadium on Saturday.

The Hurricanes moved to 41 points with the victory and are still in contention in the top six but have just one more game remaining in the regular season. The Crusaders moved to 42 with a bonus point for finishing within seven.

Hurricanes flyhalf Beauden Barrett kicked two penalties while Thomson also scored a first half try, before he beat Crusaders fullback Tom Taylor to a speculative kick by Cory Jane and spectacularly raced away untouched for the match winner in the 71st minute.

Colin Slade slotted three penalties for the visitors before he was replaced early in the second half by All Blacks flyhalf Dan Carter, who was making his return to top-flight rugby after a six-month sabbatical. - Reuters