The Hurricanes are in a rut.
Held to fewer than 15 points in their last two outings, the Wellington-based club again struggled for points in a 24-12 loss to the Brumbies in Canberra.
In their past three matches, the Hurricanes have scored 13 points, 14 and 12 – a worrying sign heading into the business end of the season.
It was a dominant performance from the home side, with the win keeping their slim playoff hopes alive. A look at the statistics shows the Brumbies were the dominant force in the match, and that was reflected in every aspect of the game.
It was clear the Hurricanes missed the influence of No.10 Beauden Barrett and loose forward trio Brad Shields, Ardie Savea and Vaea Fifita, as the ill-disciplined side struggled in a dismal performance.
It was a far from dismal start however - It's safe to say you're unlikely to see a more absurd try than TJ Perenara's opener in the fourth minute. The Hurricanes No.9 left the ground and flew through the Brumbies line to intercept an attempted long pass by his counterpart Joe Powell. The pass was made on the Brumbies' tryline, and all Perenara had to do was land in control of the ball to score the first five-pointer of the evening.
It wasn't long before the Brumbies hit back with midfielder Kyle Godwin going over out wide, but the Hurricanes followed suit through Julian Savea.
From there, the Brumbies stepped up and left the Hurricanes behind. The visitors were unable to feed their backline, as the Brumbies dominated the play and made the visitors work on the defensive end.
The Hurricanes held a 12-5 win at half-time, but the Brumbies were looking likely of pulling off the upset. That didn't change in the second half, and when hooker Folau Fainga'a scored early in the period, it was back to a level scoreboard.
While the Hurricanes had the odd chance with the ball, they didn't really show any enterprise in their play. Unable to use the ball when they had it, the Hurricanes committed too many penalties and went a man down late in the second half when Blade Thomson was shown a yellow card – a victim of the team's repeated infringements.
In the end, the Hurricanes paid the price, as the Brumbies ran in three unanswered tries in the second half to seal a 12-point win.
Brumbies 24 (Kyle Godwin, Folau Fainga'a, Rory Arnold, Andy Muirhead tries; Christian Leali'ifano con, Matt Lucas con)
Hurricanes 12 (TJ Perenara, Julian Savea tries; Jordie Barrett con)