Canterbury have run riot in their Mitre 10 Cup match against Southland in Christchurch, putting 80 past the helpless visitors.

All Black Ryan Crotty appeared to have played without any issues on his return after two months out due to injury, scoring two tries in the first half before being substituted at halftime.

It was Southland's 25th loss in a row and the biggest win in the competition since 2012, another Canterbury thrashing of Southland, when they won 84-0 at the same venue.

Earlier the Canterbury women thrashed Wellington 57-19 in their Farah Palmer Cup opener.

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Canterbury v Southland as it happened: