Auckland centre Rieko Ioane scored a hat-trick to smite Otago 54-17 at Eden Park on Saturday.
It was an all-round spectacular performance for the Aucklanders with Ioane grabbing a well deserved thee tries, while fly-half Simon Hickey scored 21 points through a try, five conversions and three penalties.
Auckland played dominant running rugby throughout the game as they let the ball do the work. Ioane picked up his first try of the game in the 10th minute to get his side in the lead. The game went quiet for ten minutes before Ioane's team-mate Taleni Seu grabbed a five pointer to make the score 12-3 to the hosts.
The home side dominated proceedings for the rest of the opening stanza as they led at half-time 27-10.
In the 46th minute Ioane dotted down for his second try after some scintillating play by Scott Scrafton and flanker Akira Ioane, who also had an industrious performance.
Ioane's third try was set up by full-back Latiume Fosita when the substitute fed Ioane a great pass who raced for the line to score.
Hickey scored his try in the 75th minute to add to his impressive tally.
Otago was relatively quiet in the second half till very death of the game when Jonah Aoina tried to save his side some embarrassment but it was too little too late.
Tries: Seu, Visinia, Nanai, Hickey, Ioane 3
Cons: Hickey 5
Pens: Hickey 3
Tries: Brighouse, Aoina
Cons: Smith, Eade
Auckland: 15 Melani Nanai, 14 Lolagi Visinia, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 Vince Aso, 11 Pryor Collier, 10 Simon Hickey (c), 9 Jono Hickey, 8 Steven Luatua, 7 Akira Ioane, 6 Taleni Seu, 5 Liaki Moli, 4 Scott Scrafton, 3 Marcel Renata, 2 Kurt Eklund, 1 Sam Prattley
Replacements: 16 Blake Hill, 17 Tom McHugh, 18 Isi Tu'ungafasi, 19 Ben Nee Nee, 20 Josh Kaifa, 21 Leon Fukofuka, 22 Liam Steel, 23 Latiume Fosita
Otago: 15 Michael Collins, 14 Mitchell Scott, 13 Matt Faddes, 12 Teihorangi Walden, 11 Fa'asiu Fuatai, 10 Fletcher Smith, 9 Jonathan Ruru, 8 Paul Grant (c), 7 James Lentjes, 6 Lee Allan, 5 Tom Franklin, 4 Josh Dickson, 3 Donald Brighouse, 2 Seko Pole, 1 Craig Millar
Replacements: 16 Nick Grogan, 17 Jonah Aoina, 18 Michael Mata'afa, 19 Blair Tweed, 20 Naulia Dawai, 21 Josh Walden, 22 Scott Eade, 23 Sio Tomkinson
Referee: Brendon Pickerill