The Highlanders cause the biggest upset in New Zealand rugby by beating the Crusaders in their own back yard on Friday 33-12.
It was a massive effort from the visitors and with brilliant defence made the champions giving away penalties and forcing them to make mistakes.
They scored twice from Crusaders mistakes which you do not see often, just showing the massive effort that went into their game on the day.
It was a good start for the Highlanders who played the first twenty minutes in the Crusaders half for most of the time.
They had a few opportunities but the Crusaders defence was yet again brilliant to keep them out. They did however kicked two penalties to take that early lead.
With more possession going their way the Highlanders worked their way to the Saders line and with great work they finally got their reward with a try by Billy Harmon in the corner.
The conversion by Mitch Hunt was over and that extend the visitors lead to 13-0.
The Crusaders gave away a lot of penalties in their own twenty two and got their warning with Hunt extending the Highlanders lead to 16-0.
The Crusaders scored a vital try after the hooter withTaylor powering over the line for their first points. This gave them a good re-start for the second half trailing 16-7 at the break.
As expected the Crusaders came back hard at the Highlanders in the second half and only some desperate defence kept them out from scoring at the start of the second half.
Although the Crusaders looked impressive in the second half it was the Highlanders that scored first with the boot of Hunt to extend the lead to 19-7.
Two mistakes by the Crusaders gave the Highlanders their second try of the match with Collins going over. A loose ball was kicked forward and it was Jordan who made a messed it up big time to give the Highlanders the ball.
Smith was absolutely brilliant in the way he manage the attack close to the Crusaders line and finally send Collins over.
This gave the Highlanders a 26-7 lead with 20 minutes to go.
Beside the game management from the Highlanders which was brilliant, their defence cause the Crusaders to make mistakes on attack and force turnovers.
The Crusaders hit back with a great try from a quick penalty close to the line which send David Havili over. There was a captain challenge but TMO stayed with the referees decision.
The Highlanders kept pushing the Crusaders in their own twenty two and they forced them in making poor decision and mistakes. One of those mistakes saw Garden-Bischop scoop up a loose ball and go over for their third try of the match.
This gave them a 33-12 lead with five minutes to go.
The Highlanders just stick to their brilliant defence and with the Crusaders trying everything they could not get any more points.
This was a brilliant win for the Highlanders considering what happen earlier in the week. Massive defence won them this one.
Crusaders(12): Tries – Codie Taylor, David Havili Conversions – Richie Mo’unga
Highlanders(33): Tries – Billy Harmon, Michael Collins, Connor Garden-Bachop Conversions – Micth Hunt(3) Penalties – Micth Hunt(4)