A 16-year-old boy who was home alone disrupted burglars and managed to punch one of them before being knocked to the ground and beaten himself.
Police say one of the offenders was armed with a knife but the teen escaped serious injuries after the two offenders fled, taking only the youth's mobile phone.
A police spokeswoman said the incident happened on Station Rd in Papatoetoe around 10pm last night when the boy heard the burglars outside his bedroom window.
When the teen confronted the burglars one of the men pulled out what is thought to be a small kitchen knife but it was not used in the incident.
Police dogs were unable to track the offenders and police would like to hear from anyone who might have information.
The offenders were described as Maori or Pacific Islanders around 180cm tall and aged 15 to 20.
One man was wearing a light blue or aqua and black scarf around his face as well as sunglasses and a dark jacket.
The second offender was also wearing sunglasses with a black short-sleeved shirt, brown Dickies shorts and black and white Puma shoes.
Anyone with information is asked to call Counties Manukau police on 09 261 1300.