Crusaders win

Crusaders continue to set the benchmark

Keeping the defending champions tryless for the first time since 2014, the Crusaders put on a clinic at the set-piece and nabbed the only five-pointer of the game, via openside Matt Todd, off the back of a maul.

They then proceeded to shut out the Hurricanes with frighteningly high line speed in defence, nullifying the potency of Beauden Barrett and company, and through the go-forward of an all-Test tight five.

Crusaders move to top of the table

Barrett, who played four tests for the All Blacks at lock last year, scored a try and impressed with his work rate on attack and defence in the No. 6 jersey as the Crusaders won their fifth successive game.

Digby Ioane, Matt Todd, Luke Romano, Codie Taylor, David Havili and Ben Funnell also crossed for the home side with flyhalf Mitch Hunt slotting four conversions, while replacement Marty McKenzie added another.

RNZ reports wingers Alex Newsome and Chance Peni crossed for the Force with flyhalf Jonno Lance converting both tries and adding a penalty.