The Highlanders have defeated defending Super Rugby champs the Crusaders 42-26 in their last pre-season match in Waimumu today.
The Highlanders led at the break 28-19 over the Crusaders.
Matt Faddes scored the opening try of the match, pouncing on a loose ball and raced away to score under the posts against the Crusaders.
He scored a hat-trick in the first half for the Highlanders.
The Highlanders take on the Blues next Friday at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin in their season opener.