Blues centre Rieko Ioane showed his individual brilliance with a hat-trick for the All Blacks in their warm up match against Otago in Christchurch.

As part of the 'Game of Three Halves', the All Blacks played the Cantabrians and Otago for 40 minutes each at a still AMI Stadium on Friday night.

Ioane has started 14 of his 16 test matches on the wing for the All Blacks but may have provided the selectors with food for thought in the midfield with his damaging running game.

His hat-trick propelled the All Blacks to a 32-0 over Otago. They then beat Canterbury 40-5 as they emerged with no major injuries.


Tries came with regularity for the All Blacks as they were too big and strong for their provincial opponents. Flanker Tom Christie scored for the Cantabrians, drawing the biggest roar of the night.

Halfback TJ Perenara scored a double against the Cantabrians as he showed his strong support play.

The All Blacks, who open their Rugby Championship campaign against Australia in Sydney next Saturday, were without nearly all of their Crusaders as they were rested after a busy Super Rugby campaign. Owen Franks had a trot at prop.

This led to a handful of selection shuffles, notably Highlanders forward Jackson Hemopo playing in the second-row, although he may be preferred as a blindside flanker.

The All Blacks played in a grey training strip without numbers, which they matched with black shorts and socks.

Waisake Naholo of the All Blacks on the burst during the Game of three Halves. Photo / Photosport
Waisake Naholo of the All Blacks on the burst during the Game of three Halves. Photo / Photosport

The two halves were what you might expect from the All Blacks as coach Steve Hansen used 25 players who all got their share of game time.

There were errors but some moments of brilliance mixed in to suggest they won't be far away from their best next weekend.

Against Otago, Beauden Barrett missed an early conversion then kicked one before the All Blacks gave up on taking them for the rest of the night.

Outside of Ioane's haul, Waisake Naholo, Nehe Milner-Skudder and Shannon Frizzell all scored tries.

It was a scrappy half and Otago had their moments with a couple of exciting movements that nearly resulted in tries.

No 8 Dylan Nel produced one tackle-busting run that generated plenty of interest but Otago eventually turned the ball over.

In the first contest, Otago put the understrength Cantabrians to the sword 28-12.

The southern visitors threw the ball around and played at an aggressive pace. They enjoyed a mountain of territory and possession throughout the contest and looked slick in patches.

Left wing Vili Koroi showed a couple of classy touches for Otago, while Highlanders midfielder Matt Faddes scored a try.

Canterbury will likely welcome back a few Super Rugby players when they open their NPC campaign against Tasman in Blenheim next Friday.

Otago start their season against Wellington in the capital next Sunday.