As it happened: Chiefs' late surge not enough as tactical Hurricanes hold on for one-point win in windy Wellington

Relive 1 NEWS NOW's live updates of tonight's Super Rugby quarter-final between the Hurricanes and Chiefs at Westpac Stadium in Wellington.

FT: HUR 32-31 CHI

CHI TRY! Fifita gets a yellow card on fulltime for a scuffle he started but it doesn't matter. Chiefs get territory from the penalty and score a heart-breaking consolation try on the full-time hooter through Boshier. Nice touch from the Chiefs. Ngatai takes the final conversion in his last game and he slots it.

Hurricanes played a tactical game on a windy night tonight. The Chiefs just couldn't break the line when they needed to early in the game and in the second half they couldn't play in the right half of the field until it was too late. That's going to do it for our coverage tonight. Po marie!

78min: HUR 32-24 CHI

CHI TRY! Chiefs finally find space on the left wing with Alaimalo. He links up with McKenzie with 20m to go and the first-five is in untouched. Nice end to the Chiefs season.

77min: HUR 32-17 CHI

Rinse and repeat. Chiefs try a line break with a risky pass. It goes to ground. Savea recovers it, sees space and kicks for a bounce into touch. Chiefs lineout on their 22m again.

75min: HUR 32-17 CHI

Chiefs are playing a desperate, loose style now but the Hurricanes line is holding. They just haven't been able to escape their half cleanly in this second half. Laumape delivers his third big hit of the night and it forces another turnover on halfway. Perenara sees space in the backfield and grubbers it through into touch. Chiefs lineout on their 22m.

72min: HUR 32-17 CHI

Chiefs make a break down the left wing with quick hands but it all goes to waste 10m from the Hurricanes line. Ball comes out to McKenzie and he moves it on to Polwart but the reserve drops it cold. That was probably there only chance of a miracle comeback, you feel.

70min: HUR 32-17 CHI

HUR TRY! Ben Lam scores No.15 for the season in the left corner and that may be the final nail. Simple move down the backline and Lam has space to work with to score. Bumps off a sweeping McKenzie and he's in. Jordie steps up this time for the conversion instead of his brother from the sideline and nails it.

67min: HUR 25-17 CHI

Hurricanes get the ball back and work the ball deep into the Chiefs' half with 15 phases of play. The ball comes out to the right wing 15m from the Chiefs' line and there's a knock on by the Chiefs in the tackle. No advantage so we're coming back for a Hurricanes scrum. 15m from the line. THis could decide the game.

65min: HUR 25-17 CHI

Chiefs have a chance to reply after the Hurricanes are penalised for hands in the ruck shortly after kickoff. McKenzie finds touch 40m from the Hurricanes' line.

63min: HUR 25-17 CHI

CHI TRY! Perenara scores off the back of the scrum again. Busts through Weber and powers over despite Cane arriving to shut him down.

61min: HUR 20-17 CHI

Hurricanes break into the Chiefs' 22m after a linebreak by Jordie before firing it out wide to Savea. Savea is brought down 15m short and the Hurricanes turn to their forwards. It takes eight phases but they get to within 5m. The ball comes out to Jordie on the right, he goes for the line and gets held up. Hurricanes scrum 5m out.

58min: HUR 20-17 CHI

Long passage of play as both sides spend time working on 10+phase attacks in the middle of the field. McKenzie sees the Chiefs going no where and kicks one through but he's overcooked it. Bounces into the Hurricanes' in-goal and Jordie arrives to to kill it. Hurricanes with a 22m dropout coming up.

54min: HUR 20-17 CHI

HUR THREE! Chiefs are penalised early after kickoff for hands in the ruck and Beauden steps up from 42m out as this game goes more on the line. He's about 10m in from the sideline for the kick. Keeps the kick low and slots a curling stunner. Hurricanes jump back in front.

51min: HUR 17-17 CHI

CHI TRY! Ngatai hoofs a clearing kick but it doesn't go out thanks to that classic Welly breeze. The bounce though is perfect for a chasing Boshier and he takes it on halfway. He chugs down into the 22m and gets brought down 10m short. It's quickly recycled to the left and Lienert-Brown scores. All tied up again.

48min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Hurricanes rumble for 14 phases but can't crack the line and it leads to a knock on. Good defence from the Chiefs there. Direct and composed. Stoppage in play for Milner-Skudder he gets a nice cut on the head patched up. Play gets back underway with a Chiefs scrum just inside their 22m.

45min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Savea gets space down the right wing but his grubber goes into touch 10m from the Chiefs line. Chiefs respond through McKenzie off the lineout with a clearance. Kick is wobbly though and only finds his 22m. Hurricanes with another lineout coming up.

43min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Hurricanes forwards get the job done as their maul earns a penalty. Chiefs tried to stop the roll but collapse it and get penalised. Beauden finds touch on halfway for a lineout.

42min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Messam makes a clean turnover on his 10m line and the Hurricanes are out of position. Alaimalo immediately thumps it down to the empty backfield and bounces it into touch. Hurricanes under pressure early with a lineout just outside their 22m.

40min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Beauden gets us going again. Someone's season will be over in 40 minutes.

HT: HUR 17-10 CHI

Chiefs had one last chance to score as Messam rumbles into the Hurricanes' 22m and more with a breat run but he pushes for an offload and loses the ball. Hurricanes recover and kick it into touch. Entertaining first half but both sides having issues with the wind kicking wise and even some odd handling errors. Hurricanes have got the lead despite having less ball. Chiefs haven't quite cracked the code for breaking the line this week. Laumape and the Bus are having big nights at home too. We'll be back soon for another thrilling 40 minutes.

38min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Chiefs look to build up another patient attack after a shocking box kick by Perenara makes little ground. But there's a wild pass that skittles to half way and Milner-Skudder is there to scoop it up. But he hasn't got it clean and it's a knock on. Chiefs scrum on halfway.

35min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Beauden goes to a crosskick but Alaimalo takes it and calls mark. Free kick for the Chiefs. Odd choice by Barrett No.10 there.

34min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Laumape with another big hit after the kickoff and it leads to a penalty for not releasing. Beauden kicks for touch on halfway and finds it. Hurricanes with a lineout just inside the Chiefs' 22m.

33min: HUR 17-10 CHI

HUR TRY! Perenara bolts off the back of the scrum and he squeezes through two tacklers to score to the left. The TMO was called in to check if there was a knock on as he went for the line but no angles can prove it so he gets benefit of the doubt. Canes back out in front.

31min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Ball comes out to Ngatai in the midfield but he's stopped in his tracks by Laumape. Laumape holds him up and a maul forms. It goes to ground and the ball isn't coming out so the ref rewards the Hurricanes with a scrum. Massive play from Laumape.

30min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Beauden looks to score near the left wing but he loses the ball in contact. Chiefs scrum on their 5m. Could be another costly decision and error.

28min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Chiefs clear but Hurricanes pin them down again with a bouncing kick into the Chiefs' 22m. McKenzie recovers and looks to run but he's got no support as he's taken to ground. Penalty comes for not releasing and the Hurricanes back themselves this time. Three points on offer with the mark inside the Chiefs' 22m but Beauden kicks for touch. Hurricanes lineout 5m from the line.

27min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Hurricanes make a break down the left wing as Lam frees up Milner-Skudder with an offload. He pops one over the top to chase but a rough bounce flings the ball into touch. Chiefs lineout 15m from their own line.

25min: HUR 10-10 CHI

The wind is really playing up in the Cake Tin as Harris is penalised again for a non-straight throw. Hurricanes scrum just outside their 22m.

24min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Chiefs patient attack pays off as they hold onto the ball for 10 phases before McKenzie spies space out the back. He grubbers it through and Beauden is there at the back to recover it but three Chiefs meet him near the sideline and the bundle him into touch. Chiefs lineout on the Hurricanes' 22m.

22min: HUR 10-10 CHI

CHI THREE! Chiefs throw everything at the Hurricanes line but it holds for 12 phases. However they're found offside and there's no advantage so it comes back for a penalty. Chiefs take the points this time and McKenzie delivers. All tied up.

19min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Chiefs with another big attacking chance. Hurricanes are penalised for hands in the ruck and the Chiefs have again turned down the three for a kick into touch. McKenzie finds it with ease and it'll be 5m from the Hurricanes' line.

16min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Evans makes a clean turnover on halfway and the Hurricanes counter-attack through Jordie. He grubbers it through the unsettled Chiefs line but it's too heavy for Lam to chase and bounces into touch inside the Chiefs' 22m.

14min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Chiefs kicking themselves after turning down three points and throwing away their penalty. They earn it 40m out after a tackler doesn't release and McKenzie finds touch 10m from the Hurricane's line but Harris' throw isn't straight so it's a Hurricanes scrum. Decisions like that can be all the difference in playoff footy.

12min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Chiefs work a turnover through Cane after kickoff but it goes to waste with a knock on moments later. Hurricanes 10m off their own line.

11min: HUR 10-7 CHI

HUR THREE! Sure enough, Hurricanes come away with points as the Chiefs are penalised for being offside two phases after the scrum. Barrett takes the easy points on offer right in front.

9min: HUR 7-7 CHI

Hurricanes turn for an immediate response as Messam knocks it on after the kickoff. That's given the Hurricanes a scrum 15m from the Chiefs' line on right side of the field.

8min: HUR 7-7 CHI

CHI TRY! Chiefs respond through Weber. Hurricanes line comes up too quick on halfway looking for another intercept and Harris is in space on the left wing. He links up with Stevenson who draws and passes to his halfback on the Hurricanes' 22m to set up the try. Doozy of a start in Wellywood.

5min: HUR 7-0 CHI

Chiefs with an immediate chance to strike back after the Hurricanes knock it on after the kickoff so it's a Chiefs scrum inside the Hurricanes' 22m. The scrum goes down, ball goes left and Savea has another intercept. He's looking to score again but Lienert-Brown gets to him and there's a knock-on as Savea looks to offload inside the Chiefs' 22m. The Bus is off to a roaring start. 

2min: HUR 7-0 CHI

HUR TRY! THE BUS IS IN UNDER THE POSTS! Chiefs get the ball on halfway after Perenara clears. McKenzie's first pass of the night is a huge skip pass and Savea has picked it. Runs 50m untouched to score. What a start for the home side after last week.


McKenzie kicks things off and we're underway in Welly!


Brad Shields has passed his fitness test so he will start at blindside for the Hurricanes and captain them tonight. That means Reed Prinsep will head to the bench and Sam Henwood gets the night off. Wes Goosen has also passed a head check to sit on the bench. Strong north-western breeze in the Cake Tin at the moment.

Chiefs flanker Mitchell Karpik is tackled by Hurricanes winger Ben Lam during the Super 15 Rugby match - Chiefs v Hurricanes played at FMG Stadium Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand on Friday 13 July 2018.

Copyright photo: © Bruce Lim /
Chiefs flanker Mitchell Karpik is tackled by Hurricanes winger Ben Lam. Source: Photosport


It's been less than a week since they last met but the landscape of tonight's contest is completely different for the Hurricanes and Chiefs.

There's the integration of rested All Blacks, a different venue and the win-or-go-home mentality all thrown into the mix this week after the Chiefs drew first blood in Hamilton last Saturday.

Firstly, the All Blacks.

The Chiefs have welcomed back Sam Cane, Karl Tu’inukuafe and Nathan Harris for the contest while the Hurricanes have recalled Julian Savea to the starting squad and shuffled their backline around to accommodate him.

Savea will be on the right wing with Ben Lam on the left as Nehe Milner-Skudder moves to fullback, meaning Jordie Barrett once again makes the bold move into the midfield.

The venue could be a big factor as well.

The Hurricanes have won 21 of their last 22 games in Wellington despite the poor form they're currently in, having lost four of their last five games - that one win was against the Blues in the Cake Tin.

With everything on the line, the teams aren't taking anything for granted tonight.

"It’s do or die at this point in the season," Chiefs coach Colin Cooper said.

"The winner takes all and we’ve talked about the importance of giving the best you can and your all for the jersey."


Hurricanes: 15 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 14 Julian Savea, 13 Jordie Barrett, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Gareth Evans, 6 Brad Shields (c)/Reed Prinsep, 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Michael Fatialofa, 3 Jeff Toomaga-Allen, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Toby Smith

Replacements: 16 James O’Reilly, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Ben May, 19 Vaea Fifita, 20 Reed Prinsep/Sam Henwood, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Ihaia West, 23 Wes Goosen/Jonah Lowe

Chiefs: 15 Solomon Alaimalo, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Charlie Ngatai, 11 Shaun Stevenson, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Liam Messam, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Lachlan Boshier, 5 Michael Allardice, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Angus Ta’avao, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Karl Tu’inukuafe

Replacements: 16 Liam Polwart, 17 Sam Prattley, 18 Jeff Thwaites, 19 Jesse Parete, 20 Mitch Karpik, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Marty McKenzie, 23 Alex Nankivell



Bolters galore: Get to know the eight rookies in the All Blacks' end-of-year tour squad

The All Blacks named eight new players to their ranks yesterday as the 51-man Northern Tour squad was revealed. Get to know each one and their journey to selection below.

Dalton Papalii

Auckland's Dalton Papali'i (C celebrate a try with team mate Jordan Trainor (R during the Lions vs Auckland Mitre 10 Cup rugby match at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington on Thursday the 4th of October 2018. Copyright Photo by Marty Melville /
Auckland's Dalton Papali'i celebrate a try with team mate Jordan Trainor. Source: Photosport

Midway through last year, Auckland loose forward Dalton Papali'i was revelling in a second World Under 20 Championship with New Zealand, as a winner in Georgia.

Despite the successes, he remained quiet working on his game and returned to his province to work on his game.

But opportunity came knocking this year as the Blues were hit by a severe injury crisis and Papali'i was signed.

After a limited role with the Super Rugby franchise, the 21-year-old played outstanding rugby for Auckland in this year's Mitre 10 Cup competition topping the tackles count late in the season.

Papali'i also captained his St Kentigern's College First XV and in 2015 led the New Zealand Schools side to a convincing win over their Aussie counterparts.

George Bridge

Bridge said he was blown away when he was approached by the Crusaders for the long-term deal. Source: 1 NEWS

The 23-year-old outside back has stamped his mark in the successful environment of the Crusaders Super Rugby team.

Born in Gisborne, Bridge moved down to Christchurch six years ago to play club rugby and was selected in the under 20s national team as well as Canterbury for the Mitre 10 Cup.

Fast forward to last year, Bridge had an outstanding Super Rugby debut during the Crusaders' successful 2017 campaign and was named their Rookie of the Year.

That impressive form continued in 2018, finishing second-equal on the leading try scorers list with 15 tries as his team defended their title.

Earlier this year Bridge signed with the club and New Zealand Rugby until 2022.

Brett Cameron

Brett Cameron of Canterbury during the Mitre 10 Cup rugby match, Canterbury v Manawatu, Christchurch Stadium, Christchurch, New Zealand, 6th September 2018.Copyright photo: John Davidson /
Brett Cameron of Canterbury makes a run. Source: Photosport

21-year-old Canterbury first-five Brett Cameron first came on the radar in last year's Mitre 10 Cup playoffs, making an assured performance in the semi-final in just his third provincial outing.

However, Cameron also made waves in 2014 when he was plucked from Wanganui's small Cullinane College and named in the New Zealand Schools training squad.

After school, Cameron headed south to Lincoln University and into the Canterbury provincial team. He played one match for the Crusaders this year.

Gareth Evans

Hurricanes reserve Gareth Evans in action during the Super 15 Rugby match - Chiefs v Hurricanes played at FMG Stadium Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand on Friday 13 July 2018.

Copyright photo: © Bruce Lim /
Gareth Evans makes a run for the Hurricanes. Source: Photosport

Born and bred in the Hawke’s Bay, 27-year-old loose forward Gareth Evans shifted south to Otago University to study and made the Otago provincial side in 2011.

He went on to play three years for the province, becoming known for his abrasive style and huge work rate.

He was drafted into the Highlanders for the 2014 season, making 14 appearances in his debut year, before helping the side to their maiden Super Rugby title in 2015 and victory over the touring British & Irish Lions in 2017.

The younger brother of 2009 All Black Bryn Evans, Gareth transferred to the Hurricanes in 2018 and quickly established himself as the first choice No. 8.

Bryn Hall

Bryn Hall will face his old teammates in a classic Kiwi derby this weekend. Source: 1 NEWS

Auckland-born Bryn Hall, 26, has plenty of leadership experience under his belt, having captained his St Peter's College First XV, was co-captain of New Zealand Under 20 in 2012, and North Harbour provincial captain in 2015.

The halfback made his provincial debut for North Harbour in 2012 and strong performances saw him selected for the Blues for the 2013 season.

He spent four years with the Blues before transferring to the Crusaders in 2017 and was part of their Championship-winning season. He also earned selection in the Māori All Blacks during last year's Lions Tour.

Tyrel Lomax

Mako player Tyrel Lomax during their Mitre 10 Cup game Tasman v Canterbury. Lansdowne Park, Blenheim, New Zealand. Friday 17 August 2018. ©Copyright Photo: Chris Symes /
Mako player Tyrel Lomax during their Mitre 10 Cup game Tasman v Canterbury. Source: Photosport

Tyrel Lomax grew up playing rugby league in Australia, before making the switch to rugby union.

The 22-year-old prop played his first year of Super Rugby for the Melbourne Rebels in 2017, before returning to New Zealand.

He played for the Tasman Mako in last year's Mitre 10 Cup and after a solid debut season was selected as one of 10 new caps in the Māori All Blacks for their tour to Canada and France.

Lomax joined the Highlanders in 2018, making 15 appearances.

Lomax played for Australian schoolboys in 2014 and the Australian U20 side the following year. His father is former Kiwis rugby league prop John Lomax.

Reuben O’Neill

Taranaki's Reuben O'Neill (L) with team mate  Ben Matwijow celebrate their win during the Mitre 10 Cup rugby match between Taranaki and Auckland at Yarrow Stadium in New Plymouth on Thursday the 13th of October 2016. Copyright Photo by Marty Melville /
Taranaki's Reuben O'Neill (L) with team mate Ben Matwijow celebrate in 2016. Source: Photosport

Taranaki prop Reuben O’Neill, 23, has overcome injury and a diabetes diagnosis early in his career to take his rugby to the next level.

O’Neill was selected in the New Zealand Schools side in 2012 and followed that up three years with selection to the Taranaki Mitre 10 Cup squad after successfully returning to rugby from a back injury.

O'Neill was a member of the Taranaki side which upset Canterbury to take the Ranfurly Shield in 2017, alongside All Blacks teammate Angus Ta’avao.

He has continued to shore up the scrum so far this year and his strength and power in the front row has reportedly caught the attention of the All Blacks selectors.

Matt Proctor

Centre for the defending champions Matt Proctor spoke after his side were drawn to play away in Japan, instead of in front of their own fans. Source: 1 NEWS

A standout player for both the Hurricanes and the Wellington Lions provincial side, Matt Proctor made his Super Rugby debut in 2013 and was a part of the Hurricanes side that secured their first Super Rugby title in 2016.

His Super season was cut short by injury this year but he returned to captain Wellington’s 2018 Mitre 10 Cup campaign.

Proctor has represented the Māori All Blacks 10 times and his representative career also includes New Zealand Schools and New Zealand Under 20s.



Nehe Milner-Skudder, Akira Ioane headline inexperienced Maori All Blacks squad for Americas tour

The Māori All Blacks' squad to tour North and South America next month has been named with five players named yesterday's All Blacks squad also being selected this morning.

Head Coach Clayton McMillan has selected a 27-strong squad for the three-Test tour with five players featured in the All Blacks' wider Japan squad featuring in his team.

Prop Tyrel Lomax, lock Jackson Hemopo, halfback Bryn Hall, midfielder Matt Proctor and winger Nehe Milner-Skudder will all join the the team later for the South American leg of the tour after the complete their commitments in Japan.

Akira Ioane also features in the squad after failing to make the cut for the All Blacks' 51-man squad.

McMillan said the departure of some experienced players offshore, and dual duties with the All Blacks, created an opportunity for several new faces.

"We’re looking at almost 10 debutants which you would expect after some players have moved on," he said.

"Some of these debutants have had incredibly strong seasons with their provinces in Mitre 10 Cup, and their Super Rugby clubs, so we are excited to see what they will bring on this tour."

There are nine new faces in the squad; hooker Robbie Abel, locks Isaia Walker-Leawere and Pari Pari Parkinson, loose forwards Hoani Matenga, Billy Harmon, and Mitchell Karpik, first five-eighth Joshua Ioane, midfielder Matthew Landsown and outside back Jonah Lowe.

McMillan said they have all proved earned their spots with their recent form.

"Josh Ioane was with the Highlanders, and with Otago he demonstrates he is at the forefront of all the action, including playing an integral role in Otago’s successful Ranfurly Shield challenge, and, like Otere (Black) who has been strong for Manawatū, he is very accurate with his goalkicking.

"Pari Pari has to be the tallest lock running around in New Zealand rugby at the moment and he’s been a stand out for Tasman.

"We’ve got a great mix in the loose forwards – including the experienced Reed Prinsep and Akira Ioane who will bring explosive power to the loose forward mix. Along with the new guys (Hoani Matenga, Billy Harmon and Mitchell Karpik) they’re a young group but they’ve got some physicality."

The squad is assembling next week in the Bay of Plenty before their departure from Auckland International Airport next Sunday 28 October.

Their first Test is on Sunday November 3 against USA at 12pm NZT in Chicago.

Maori All Blacks perform the Haka during the Maori All Blacks v NZ Barbarians match at Eden Park in Auckland Source: Photosport



Black Ferns mix veterans with fresh faces as squad named for end-of-year tour of USA and France

The Black Ferns have announced their squad for their upcoming November Tour with three new players getting called into the team.

Head coach Glenn Moore named his squad this morning to play in the triple-header Test against the USA in Chicago as well as two Tests in France next month.

Moore said backs Ayesha Leti-I'iga (Wellington), Kilisitina Moata'ane (Otago) and Natahlia Moors (Auckland) received the call-up after stellar Farah Palmer Cup seasons.

Moore said the trio possessed everything a coach wanted in a back; explosive speed, tenacity and great footwork.

"They've all stood out in the FPC and all three players deserve their selection. This trio will add a lot of firepower to our backline and I’m looking forward to seeing what they can achieve in the Black Ferns environment."

Also in line to make their Black Fern debuts are Joanah Ngan-Woo, Marcelle Parkes and Monica Tagoai who were all part of the squad for the two-Test series against Australia.

Black Ferns Sevens players Theresa Fitzpatrick and Alena Saili were unavailable for selection due to Black Ferns Sevens commitments, but Stacey Waaka is included in the squad as a utility back.

"We are thrilled to have Stacey with us. She is a fantastic athlete who always makes an impact on the field and thrives in our environment."

Fiao'o Faamausili will captain the side while Selica Winiata and Kendra Cocksedge have been named as co-vice captains.

Moore said the squad has plenty to gain from the mix of veterans and fresh faces.

"We are continuing our strategy of including a mix of experienced and new players.

"We want to give younger players an opportunity to be in the Black Ferns environment and develop their skills so by the time the 2021 World Cup comes around we have a broad base of outstanding athletes to select from."

The Black Ferns begin their tour at Soldier Field in Chicago against USA on November 4 at 6am NZT.

Black Ferns

Forwards: Eloise Blackwell, Les Elder (nee Ketu), Fiao'o Faamausili (c), Aldora Itunu, Linda Itunu, Pip Love, Charmaine McMenamin, Aleisha Nelson, Joanah Ngan-Woo*, Te Kura Ngata-Aerengamate, Marcelle Parkes*, Jackie Patea-Fereti, Leilani Perese, Aroha Savage, Charmaine Smith, Cristo Tofa

Backs: Chelsea Alley, Kendra Cocksedge, Krysten Cottrell, Kiritapu Demant, Ruahei Demant, Ayesha Leti-I’iga*, Kilisitina Moata’ane*, Natahlia Moors*, Kristina Sue, Monica Tagoai*, Stacey Waaka, Renee Wickliffe, Selica Winiata

Black Ferns' Stacey Waaka takes on the Wallaroos defence at ANZ Stadium in Sydney. Wallaroos v Black Ferns, Bledisloe doubleheader. ANZ Stadium, Sydney, Australia. 18th August 2018. Copyright Photo: David Neilson /
Black Ferns' Stacey Waaka takes on the Wallaroos defence at ANZ Stadium in Sydney. Source: Photosport


Watch: Smiling assassin Damian McKenzie adds another tool to arsenal, nails goal-kicking with both feet

Damian McKenzie appears to have refined another attacking tool in his already impressive repertoire after sharing footage on social media of his goal-kicking skills - using both feet.

The 23-year-old, who is famous for his cheeky grin when he kicks, posted videos on Instagram of him practicing the art in Wanaka with pin-point accuracy as he hit a pole using both his left and right foot.

"Always finding ways to get better as a player," he said.

"No goal posts to kick at, so had to improvise a little. Aim small miss small they reckon. Could kick all day with this backdrop."

The skill drew the attention of multiple global sport icons, with NRL star Angus Crichton, former Wallaby Quade Cooper, cricketer AB de Villiers and fellow rugby players Vince Aso and Liam Squire all quick to praise his efforts.

The All Blacks first-five used a pole instead of goal posts as a target – and still nailed it. Source: Damian McKenzie / Instagram