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Blues heap more blues on ailing Crusaders in Auckland

Ross Setford/AAP PHOTOS

The Auckland Blues have handed Super Rugby champs the Canterbury Crusaders a fifth straight loss with an emphatic 26-6 win at Eden Park that leaves the Christchurch-based giants rooted to the bottom of the standings.

It was the Blues' first win over the Crusaders in 10 years, consigning the defending champs, in the middle of their worst-ever sequence of results, to an extraordinary 0-5 start to the season on Saturday.

Auckland, who had led 9-6 after a tight first half, forged clear after the break, with the Crusaders' misery compounded by suffering another injury as their stand-in captain David Havili was forced off.

Crusaders halfback Willi Heinz earning a yellow card just before halftime was a turning point, with the Blues going on to grab two tries through AJ Lam and Ofa Tu'ungafasi.

Another All Black Patrick Tuipulotu had a terrific match in his 100th game for the Blues, capping a fine performance from the Auckland pack.

Five-eighth Stephen Perofeta was also outstanding for the Blues, controlling the game with his fine kicking from the tee and from hand as the home side won their fourth game out of five.

"A win that hasn't been achieved for 10 years is a monkey off our backs," Blues coach Vern Cotter said.

"We made it hard for ourselves with a lack of composure and stress with playing the Crusaders, so hopefully we can put that behind us now the victory is there and the boys found a way but everyone needs to keep their feet on the ground."