Planet Rugby

Chiefs defeat 14-man Blues

13th July 2013 10:25

Share:

saili blues chiefs

Fend: Francis Saili

Tighthead prop Ben Tameifuna bagged two tries as the Chiefs brushed off the 14-man Blues 26-16 at Eden Park on Saturday.

Kane Barrett's straight red card in the first half left the Blues competing with only 14 men for three quarters of the match, but their intensity and commitment remained excellent throughout.

Four tries from the Chiefs were indebted in many ways to their numerical advantage. The Blues though never gave up, eager to send off the departing Ali Williams, Rene Ranger and Anthony Boric with a win.

A miracle though was out of reach for Sir John Kirwan's side as the Chiefs secured top spot in the New Zealand Conference and for the moment moved top of the Super Rugby table with a five-point victory - Tameifuna impressing especially with his close-range second half brace.

First points came from a Baden Kerr penalty, Aaron Cruden responding shortly after when Francis Saili was penalised for hands in the ruck.

Bundee Aki's narrow finish in the right corner then put the champions out in front, getting behind the Blues defensive line for the game's first try.

All sense of a contest one suspected would then be sucked out of the match following Barrett's straight red card after 23 minutes, for use of the boot on an opposition player's head at the ruck.

Being a man down couldn't stop the travel-weary Blues from adding a try of their own though. Kerr's clever grubber behind the defence was pounced upon by Charles Piutau to level the scoreline, Kerr's resulting conversion putting the hosts in front.

Robbie Robinson was pulled back from a potential score due to a forward pass but the Chiefs could not be held out for long, capitalising on their numerical advantage in the pack to dot down from the back of a rolling maul with Hika Elliott. Kerr chipped back with a penalty to leave the scores level at 13-13 come the interval.

It was even worse for the Blues after the break - with Kerr sent to the sin-bin for a deliberate knock-on following Liam Messam's interception break down the right touchline.

Competing with 14 men was bearable but 13 proved too difficult for the Blues - the man-mountain Ben Tameifuna burrowing his way over with a clever finish to put the Chiefs back in front.

Big Ben then struck for a second time - the tighthead prop picking up the mantle from Sona Taumalolo's try-scoring exploits from last season to put the Chiefs up by seven at 23-16.

Messam was unfortunate not to add a fifth try after a poor pass from Asaeli Tikoirotuma left him short of time to finish in the corner, good work from the Blues prop Angus Ta'avao keeping the All Black out.

Resilient, gritty defence from the Blues throughout prevented any further tries, paying a fine tribute to Williams, with the hosts still within seven points looking for an equalising try.

Instead it was Gareth Anscombe, coming off the bench following a long injury layoff, who kicked a last-minute penalty for the Chiefs against his old side to secure a 26-16 victory.

The scorers:

For Blues:
Try: Piutau
Con: Kerr
Pens: Kerr 3
Yellow Card: Kerr
Red Card: Barrett

For Chiefs:
Tries: Aki, Elliott, Tameifuna 2
Pens: Cruden, Anscombe

Blues: 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Frank Halai, 13 Rene Ranger, 12 Francis Saili, 11 Lolagi Visinia, 10 Baden Kerr, 9 Piri Weepu, 8 Peter Saili / Brendon O'Connor, 7 Luke Braid, 6 Kane Barrett, 5 Ali Williams, 4 Anthony Boric, 3 Angus Ta'avao, 2 Keven Mealamu, 1 Sam Prattley.
Replacements: 16 James Parsons, 17 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 18 Liaki Moli, 19 Brendon O'Connor / Sean Polwart, 20 Jamison Gibson-Park, 21 Jackson Willison, 22 Marty McKenzie.

Chiefs: 15 Andrew Horrell, 14 Lelia Masaga, 13 Tim Nanai-Williams, 12 Bundee Aki, 11 Robbie Robinson, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Matt Vant Leven, 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Liam Messam, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Craig Clarke, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 Mahonri Schwalger, 17 Pauliasi Manu, 18 Michael Fitzgerald, 19 Sam Cane, 20 Augustine Pulu, 21 Gareth Anscombe, 22 Asaeli Tikoirotuma.

Referee: Chris Pollock (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Jonathon White (New Zealand), Garrett Williamson (New Zealand
Television match official: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Top 14
Friday , August 29
Clermont Auvergne vs MontpellierClermont Auvergne vs Montpellier Preview
Saturday , August 30
La Rochelle vs Toulouse14:45
Castres vs Bayonne18:30
Lyon vs Brive18:30
Grenoble vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Oyonnax vs Stade Francais18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Toulon20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , August 29
Pumas vs SharksPumas vs Sharks Preview
Saturday , August 30
Griquas vs Cheetahs15:00
Blue Bulls vs Western ProvinceBlue Bulls vs Western Province Preview
Eastern Province Kings vs Lions19:10
More Currie Cup fixtures
ITM Cup
Saturday , August 30
Counties Manukau vs Hawkes Bay14:35
Southland vs Otago17:35
North Harbour vs Waikato19:35
Sunday , August 31
Taranaki vs Bay Of Plenty14:35
Auckland vs Tasman16:35
Wednesday, September 3
Manawatu vs Bay Of Plenty19:35
Thursday , September 4
Otago vs Canterbury19:35
More ITM Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
ITM Cup
Friday , August 29
Wellington 21 - 27 ManawatuWellington vs Manawatu Report
Thursday , August 28
Canterbury 48 - 3 NorthlandCanterbury vs Northland Report
Wednesday, August 27
Waikato 17 - 46 TaranakiWaikato vs Taranaki Report
Sunday , August 24
Manawatu 7 - 35 AucklandManawatu vs Auckland Report
Bay Of Plenty 27 - 56 TasmanBay Of Plenty vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Rugby Championship
Saturday , August 23
New Zealand 51 - 20 AustraliaNew Zealand vs Australia Report
Argentina 31 - 33 South AfricaArgentina vs South Africa Report
More Rugby Championship results
Top 14
Brive 6 - 21 Clermont AuvergneBrive vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Bayonne 38 - 12 Oyonnax
Stade Francais 23 - 20 Lyon
Toulon 60 - 19 La Rochelle
Montpellier 20 - 17 GrenobleMontpellier vs Grenoble Report
Bordeaux-Begles 30 - 21 Racing Metro Paris
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Blue Bulls 30 - 25 Eastern Province KingsBlue Bulls vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Western Province 27 - 14 LionsWestern Province vs Lions Report
Sharks 19 - 16 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Northland 35 - 5 WellingtonNorthland vs Wellington Report
Counties Manukau 29 - 25 OtagoCounties Manukau vs Otago Report
More ITM Cup results
Top 14
Friday , August 22
Toulouse 35 - 6 CastresToulouse vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Pumas 33 - 15 GriquasPumas vs Griquas Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Waikato 27 - 58 CanterburyWaikato vs Canterbury Report
Hawkes Bay 29 - 26 TaranakiHawkes Bay vs Taranaki Report
Thursday , August 21
North Harbour 21 - 25 Southland
Sunday , August 17
Tasman 35 - 15 Hawkes BayTasman vs Hawkes Bay Report
Northland 23 - 28 Manawatu
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath00
2Exeter00
3Gloucester00
4Harlequins00
5Leicester Tigers00