The Waratahs joined the Reds at the top of their Super Rugby conference on Friday after defeating the Chiefs 23-16 at the SFS.
The Waratahs joined the Reds at the top of their Super Rugby conference on Friday after defeating the Chiefs 23-16 at Sydney Football Stadium.
It was not the most fluent of performances from the Australians but that will not bother Chris Hickey as another win was posted on the board.
However, the Chiefs will no doubt be ruing an opportunity gone begging as missed kicks from Mike Delany ultimately cost his Kiwi franchise.
The Waratahs began the game sprightly and opened the scoring via Atieli Pakalani, which was converted by makeshift fly-half Kurtley Beale. That effort was about as exciting as things got however as set-piece delays and mistakes held things up.
Delany did post a couple of penalties either side of a Beale three-pointer before the visitors were reduced to fourteen men when prop Nathan White was binned for repeated scrum infringements.
The hosts took full advantage as another collapsed set-piece saw them awarded a penalty try. Beale added the extras before slotting a penalty just before half-time.
Ian Foster's outfit rarely threatened the home whitewash in truth until they launched a late surge that regularly involved Lelia Masaga. Yet they will be disappointed not to get both Masaga and Sitiveni Sivivatu into the game more on the day. Tim Nanai-Williams did cross for the back-three on 58 minutes but it was in vein as Delany's off-key night continued.
The 'Tahs' victory moves them level on points with rivals the Reds while they also jump into the top four on the overall table, temporarily at least, as the Chiefs move up one position.
Man-of-the-match: Tough to pick out a standout player on Friday but we were impressed by the effort put in by Isaac Ross. He was a real handful in the loose and deserves this gong.
Tries: Pakalani, Penalty
Con: Beale 2
Pen: Beale 2
Pen: Delany 2, Nanai-Williams
Waratahs: 15 Lachie Turner, 14 Atieli Pakalani, 13 Ryan Cross, 12 Tom Carter, 11 Drew Mitchell, 10 Kurtley Beale, 9 Luke Burgess, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Phil Waugh (capt), 6 Ben Mowen, 5 Pat O'Connor, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 Damien Fitzpatrick, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 Sitaleki Timani, 19 Dave Dennis, 20 Pat McCutcheon, 21 Brendan McKibbin, 22 Daniel Halangahu.
Chiefs: 15 Tim Nanai-Williams, 14 Lelia Masaga, 13 Richard Kahui, 12 Dwayne Sweeney, 11 Sitiveni Sivivatu, 10 Mike Delany, 9 Brendon Leonard, 8 Liam Messam (capt), 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Scott Waldrom, 5 Isaac Ross, 4 Craig Clarke, 3 Nathan White, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 Aled de Malmanche, 17 Sona Taumalolo, 18 Culum Retallick, 19 Fritz Lee, 20 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 21 Tana Umaga, 22 Save Tokula.
Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referee: James Leckie (Australia), Lourens van der Merwe (South Africa)
Television match official: George Ayoub (Australia)