The Highlanders have kept their Super 14 top four chances alive with a 24-19 win over the Queensland Reds at Invercargill.
It was the Highlanders' fourth win in their last five games. Their next game is against the Blues in Auckland on Friday.
Both sides scored three tries. The Reds led 12-10 at halftime after racing out to a 5-0 lead after less than 30 seconds as they flung the ball wide from the kick-off and Quade Cooper touched down.
Then the two sides swapped tries to locks Josh Bekhuis for the Highlanders and Hugh McMeniman for the Reds.
In the second half the Highlanders scored two early tries to lead 23-12 but the Reds closed the gap to five with eight minutes to go and though they attacked for most of the last few minutes they could not score.