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Hurricanes too good for Chiefs in Wellington

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Friday, April 13, 2018    allblacks.com    Getty Images

With creative play-makers and explosive game-breakers sprinkled throughout either side, the Hurricanes desperate defence nullified many of the Chiefs scoring opportunities. The Chiefs weren’t as effective on defence as the Hurricanes crossed for three brilliant tries to edge the game.

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Their first try came after just six minutes and was a stunning effort from form wing Ben Lam. The former sevens star has scored a lot of good tries this year, but none were better than this effort. After receiving an offload from Ngani Laumape from a well-worked set piece move, Lam had too much pace and power for the three covering defenders to score under the posts.

That was to be the biggest piece of action in a trying first half as neither team managed to take control.

It doesn’t matter who you are in Super Rugby, you cannot afford to switch off against the Hurricanes and the Chiefs found this out the hard way early in the second half.

Beauden Barrett showed his class in the 42nd minute when he pounced on a loose ball and chipped ahead to beat Brodie Retallick to the line to extend the Hurricanes out to 17-6.

With the momentum firmly on their side, the Hurricanes marched towards the Chiefs line with forwards and backs combining brilliantly. When the Chiefs conceded a penalty close to the line, Beauden Barrett took advantage with a superb cross kick into the arms of Ngani Laumape to extend the lead to 22-6 after 46 minutes.



The Chiefs needed to score next to have any chance of winning the contest and began to upset the Hurricanes defensive line with Damian McKenzie and Solomon Alaimalo looking dangerous.

After a period of steady attack on the Hurricanes line, the Chiefs finally crossed in the 60th minute when Lachlan Boshier found himself unmarked out wide.

The game was set for a big final quarter, but Chiefs errors at the wrong time and the Hurricanes desperate scrambling defence ensured the home-side came away with a comfortable 25-13 win.

For the Hurricanes, it snapped a two-game losing streak against the Chiefs and sets them up nicely with a bye next week. The Chiefs remain in third place on the New Zealand conference and head to Brisbane to take on the Reds next week.

Hurricanes captain Brad Shields said: “In these New Zealand derbies we really push each other to the limit. I’m proud how we came out in that second half – we scrambled hard and worked hard to get back on defence.”

Scorers:
Hurricanes 25 (Ben Lam, Beauden Barrett, Ngani Laumape tries, Jordie Barrett 2 con, pen) Chiefs 13 (Lachlan Boshier try, Damian McKenzie 2 pen, con)
HT: 10-6