Cape Town - The Highlanders stepped up their title ambitions with a comprehensive thrashing of the Blues in their final Super Rugby league match in Auckland on Friday.
The Highlanders won 44-7 after leading 20-0 at half-time.
The Highlanders scored seven tries through flanks John Hardie and Elliot Dixon, wing Patrick Osborne, centre Shaun Treeby, No 8 Dan Pryor, lock Joe Latta and fullback Ben Smith. Flyhalf Lima Sopoaga was on target with three conversions and a penalty.
The Blues replied with a try by replacement Matt McGahan and a conversion by flyhalf Ihaia West.
The Highlanders will now face an anxious wait to see whether they will host a "quarter-final" next weekend.
Charles Piutau, 14 Ben Lam, 13 Hamish Northcott, 12 George Moala, 11
Melani Nanai, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Jamison Gibson-Park, 8 Joe Edwards, 7
Brendon O'Connor, 6 Chris Vui, 5 Josh Bekhuis, 4 Hayden Triggs, 3 Angus
Ta'avao, 2 Keven Mealamu (captain)1 Sam Prattley
Substitutes: 16 James Parsons, 17 Nic Mayhew, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Will Lloyd, 20 Jack Ram, 21 Jimmy Cowan, 22 Matt McGahan, 23 Lolagi Visinia
15 Ben Smith (captain), 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Richard Buckman, 12 Shaun Treeby, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Dan Pryor, 7 John Hardie, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Joe Latta, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Daniel Lienert-Brown
Substitutes: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Brendon Edmonds, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Jackson Hemopo, 20 Gareth Evans, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Marty Banks, 23 Kurt Baker