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Highlanders beat Crusaders in friendly

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 23/06/2016

The Highlanders have tuned up for the return of Super Rugby and a trip to South Africa and Argentina by beating the Crusaders 40-12 in a friendly in Oamaru.

With both sides missing plenty of players to international duty, the Highlanders ran in six tries to two against the competition leaders on Thursday.

First five-eighth Marty Banks directed them well around the park, while Bay of Plenty's Te Aihe Toma, called up in the absence of regular half-backs Aaron Smith and Fumiaki Tanaka, also impressed, scoring a try in the process.

The Highlanders, who are in the fifth and last play-off spot in Super Rugby's Australasian group, fly out on Saturday for their match against the Southern Kings in Port Elizabeth the following weekend.

They then take on the Jaguares in Buenos Aires before completing the regular season by hosting the Chiefs.

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