Manasa Mataele scored a hat‑trick as the Crusaders walloped the Sunwolves 50‑3 in the Super Rugby last night.
All Blacks captain Kieran Read, making his first appearance of the season, Ben Funnell, Pete Samu, George Bridge and Whetu Douglas also crossed for the home side who were celebrating Wyat Crockett's 176th appearance.
Crockett, who led the team onto the field, surpassed the previous mark of 175 appearances racked up by former All Blacks hooker Keven Mealamu.
Crusaders flyhalf Richie Mo’unga added three conversions, while Marty McKenzie also slotted two as the Crusaders dominated up front against a limited Japanese side, who kicked away too much possession.
The Crusaders have won all seven games this season and head into next week’s match with the Stormers.
All Blacks utility back Seta Tamanivalu was the victim of the slippery surface when he skidded into Kotaro Matsushima, who was in the process of catching a high kick, and was given a yellow card.
Tamanivalu did not return, having also received medical treatment after the collision.
In today’s matches, the Reds play the Kings at 5.05pm, the Blues face the Hurricanes at 7.35pm and Rebels will take on the Brumbies at 9.45pm.
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