Chiefs claims Highlanders' scalp

Sat, 02 Feb 2013 08:03
Large patrick osborne chiefs v hi Large chiefs v highlanders3 Large chiefs v highlanders Large chiefs v highlanders2

The defending Super Rugby champion Chiefs have carried straight on from where they left off last year.

The defending Super Rugby champion Chiefs have carried straight on from where they left off last year.

The men from Hamilton convincingly won 36-14 in their first pre-season match of the year against the Highlanders in Taupo on Saturday.

On the back of some solid set piece work and some slick back play the Chiefs put on five tries and won the match 36–14 in hot and sunny conditions at Owen Delany Park.

The Chiefs gave All Blacks Brodie Retallick and Sam Cane a run in the last 10 minutes of the match, while Aaron Cruden and Tawera Kerr-Barlow featured nearer the end, with Liam Messam not used.

Meanwhile, the Highlanders side featured three players from the end of year tour – Hosea Gear, who was captain, as well as Ben Smith and Aaron Smith, though the latter spent the entire match on the bench.

Fellow prominent All Blacks Tony Woodcock and Ma'a Nonu weren't taken to Taupo, while Tamati Ellison was missing as he's recovering from off-season shoulder surgery and regular skipper Andrew Hore is serving a suspension.

Brad Thorn made his return to New Zealand rugby after his time with the Fukuoka Sanix Blues in Japan and Leinster in Ireland, and got through a solid half of work.

However, the Chiefs were able to dominate proceedings, having the better of possession and territory throughout and taking the majority of their chances.

The only points of the first 20-minute quarter came right on the quarter break when Chiefs fullback Tim Nanai-Williams was put through a yawning gap, showing great pace and a nice swerve before unloading to first-five eighth Gareth Anscombe to dot down.

Anscombe, in his first outing for the Chiefs after being unwanted at the Blues, converted to give the hosts a 7-0 lead at the break.

The Chiefs opened the scoring in the second spell, with a couple of penalties gifting them good field position, before winger Asaeli Tikoirotuma showed strength to muscle over down the blind side.

Just three minutes later the Highlanders opened their account through a fantastic try, finished by Gear, following some beautiful quick hands which stretched the Chiefs' defence on the left.

The home side hit back when halfback Augustine Pulu took a quick tap from a five-metre scrum free kick and caught the Highlanders' defence napping.

Despite having prop Ben Afeaki come from the field with a knee complaint, the Chiefs had the better of the remainder of the second quarter, and Anscombe added a penalty before halftime to give his side a 22-7 buffer.

Both teams made wholesale changes at halftime and just three minutes into the third stanza the Chiefs extended their lead, when No 8 Fritz Lee scored off the back of a powerful surge by the pack.

Anscombe added the extras to make it 29-7 and that's the way it stayed till the three-quarter break after some solid defence from the Highlanders prevented the hosts from adding to their tally.

The visitors spent plenty of time in the Chiefs' half in the final quarter but some impressive defence from the hosts kept their line intact.

A blistering break from Tikoirotuma set up Anscombe for his double and he converted to finish with a haul of 21 points, before the Highlanders scored in the corner right on fulltime through Tony Ensor.

The Chiefs next face the Reds in the Sunshine Coast on Friday, while the Highlanders will encounter the Crusaders in Oamaru.

The scorers:

For the Chiefs:
Tries:
Anscombe 2, Tikoirotuma, Pulu, Lee
Cons: Anscombe 4
Pen: Anscombe

For the Highlanders:
Tries:
Gear, Ensor
Cons: Sopoaga 2

Teams:

Chiefs squad: Ben Afeaki, Bundee Aki, Gareth Anscombe, Sam Cane, Craig Clarke, Nick Croswell, Aaron Cruden, Hika Elliot, Ross Filipo, Michael Fitzgerald, Romana Graham, Andrew Horrell, Richard Kahui, Tawera Kerr Barlow, Tanerau Latimer, Fritz Lee, Brendon Leonard, Pauliasi Manu, Rhys Marshall, Lelia Masaga, Liam Messam, Tim Nanai-Williams, Charlie Ngatai, Patrick Osborne, Augustine Pulu, Brodie Retallick, Robbie Robinson, Solomoana Sakalia, Mahonri Schwalger, Toby Smith, Ben Tameifuna, Asaeli Tikoirotuma, Michael Kainga, Michael Leitch, Matt Vant Leven, Maritino Nemani

Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith, 14 Buxton Popoalii, 13 Phil Burleigh, 12 Shaun Treeby, 11 Hosea Gear (captain), 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Frae Wilson, 8 Elliot Dixon, 7 Tim Boys, 6 Jarrad Hoeata, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Brad Thorn, 3 Ma'afu Fia, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Jamie Mackintosh.
Replacements - from: Jason Emery, Tony Ensor, Kade Poki, Hayden Parker, Trent Renata, Aaron Smith, Fumiaki Tanaka, Josh Bekhuis, Hugh Blake, Tom Franklin, Paul Grant, Brayden Mitchell, Bronson Murray & Sam Prattley.

Referee: Nick Briant
Assistant referees: Shane McDermott, AN Other

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 February 2017
Harlequins v Leicester Tigers 17h45 Twickenham Stoop
Edinburgh v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Myreside
Dragons v Leinster 19h30 Rodney Parade
Munster v Scarlets 19h35 Thomond Park
Sat, 25 February 2017
Sunwolves v Hurricanes 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Brumbies 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Force 08h45 Allianz Park
Saracens v Sale Sharks 12h45 Allianz Park
Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Franklin's Gardens
Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons 13h00 Sandy Park
Cheetahs v Lions 13h05 Bloemfontein
Scotland v Wales 14h25 BT Murrayfield
Kings v Jaguares 15h15 Port Elizabeth
Ireland v France 16h50 Aviva Stadium
Stormers v Bulls 17h30 Cape Town
Sun, 26 February 2017
Bristol v Bath 11h00 Ashton Gate
Wasps v Gloucester 12h30 Ricoh Arena
Treviso v Connacht 12h30 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Zebre v Ulster 12h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h05 Liberty Stadium
England v Italy 15h00 Twickenham Stadium
Mon, 27 February 2017
UCT-Ikeys v Maties 14h45 Cape Town
UWC v TUT 16h30 Cape Town
CUT-Ixias v UJ 16h30 Bloemfontein
Rhodes v Fort Hare 16h30 Grahamstown
UP-Tuks v Wits 16h30 Pretoria
CPUT v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Cape Town
Shimlas v NWU-Pukke 17h00 Bloemfontein
Thu, 02 March 2017
Force v Reds 10h30 Perth
Fri, 03 March 2017
Chiefs v Blues 06h35 Hamilton
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 24 February 2017
Reds v Sharks 28 | 26
Highlanders v Chiefs 15 | 24
Thu, 23 February 2017
Rebels v Blues 18 | 56
Tue, 21 February 2017
CUT-Ixias v Shimlas 13 | 22
Mon, 20 February 2017
UJ v UP-Tuks 18 | 11
UKZN-Impi v Fort Hare 16 | 10
UWC v Rhodes 88 | 8
Maties v NMMU-Madibaz 35 | 16
TUT v WSU 13 | 17
NWU-Pukke v UCT-Ikeys 20 | 15
Sun, 19 February 2017
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 46 | 31
Sale Sharks v Wasps 34 | 28
Sat, 18 February 2017
Connacht v Dragons 14 | 9
Ospreys v Munster 23 | 25
Leicester Tigers v Bristol 50 | 17
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Reds 1 1 0 0 4
Brumbies 0 0 0 0 0
Waratahs 0 0 0 0 0
Force 0 0 0 0 0
Rebels 1 0 0 1 0
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Blues 1 1 0 0 5
Chiefs 1 1 0 0 5
Hurricanes 0 0 0 0 0
Crusaders 0 0 0 0 0
Highlanders 1 0 0 1 0
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 0 0 0 0 0
Bulls 0 0 0 0 0
Cheetahs 0 0 0 0 0
Sunwolves 0 0 0 0 0
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Sharks 1 0 0 1 1
Lions 0 0 0 0 0
Jaguares 0 0 0 0 0
Kings 0 0 0 0 0