Highlanders humiliate Stormers

Highlanders humiliate Stormers

The resurgent Highlanders humbled the Stormers 57-14 in Dunedin to get their season back on track with a fifth straight win.

Highlanders vs Stormers

The Highlanders scored nine tries to two, including two apiece for Patrick Osborne and Waisake Naholo, to notch their best ever Super Rugby score.

The Stormers opened an early lead but soon fell off the pace to slump to their third consecutive loss.

They still comfortably lead the Africa 1 conference but have lost the momentum they built winning their opening six matches of the season.

In contrast, the Highlanders had a shaky start but have now racked up five straight and are showing the attacking potency that won the 2015 title.

The win also maintains New Zealand teams' unblemished record on home soil in 13 matches against overseas opposition this season.

The statistic underlines the challenge facing the British and Irish Lions as they seek to breach Fortress New Zealand mentality during their June-July tour.

The Stormers came out firing, determined not to repeat the slow start that led to last week's 57-24 demolition by the Canterbury Crusaders. 

They were rewarded in the seventh minute when Siya Kolisi went on a defence-busting run, then flicked a backhanded offload to set up Nizaam Carr's try.

The Highlanders hit back almost immediately, sending the ball through seven pairs of hands for Patrick Osborne to touch down in his 50th Super Rugby match for the hosts.

Waisake Naholo followed up with another after the Highlanders won a dubious line-out penalty to put themselves in a prime attacking position. 

Osborne scored a second five-pointer off the back of a stray Stormers' kick, then Liam Squires crossed after the Highlanders set up a driving maul. 

Osborne then set up the Highlander's fifth try, holding off two defenders to palm off the ball to Rob Thompson, who sent them into the break 31-7. 

The nightmare continued for the Stormers after the break, with tries to Naholo, Dillon Hunt, Greg Pleasants-Tate and Matt Faddes.

A late consolation try to Dewaldt Duvenage did little to take the sting from a humiliating scoreline for the Stormers.

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