Hurricanes overwhelm hapless Chiefs
May 24, 2014
The Chiefs were completely outplayed and struggled to hold the rampaging Hurricanes
© Getty Images
The Hurricanes eased back up the condensed New Zealand Super Rugby conference table with an outstanding six-try 45-8 win over the Chiefs in Wellington on Saturday. They now sit third, a scant point behind the leading Crusaders and equal with the second-placed Highlanders, who have a game in hand.
The Hurricanes were particularly lethal on the counterattack, pouncing on turnovers and launching from deep inside their own half to take a 21-8 lead into half-time. Playing into a swirling Wellington northerly gale, the Hurricanes drew first blood after four minutes when five-eighth Beauden Barrett made a half-break 60 metres out.
He unloaded to a barnstorming Julian Savea who broke clear down the middle and found fullback Andre Taylor on his shoulder to finish. Replacement flanker Liam Squire, on while Sam Cane was in the blood bin, made the most of his chances in powering over after 15 minutes after the Chiefs showed impressive patience in building phases before spinning it wide.
Prop Ben Franks picked up a rare try out wide soon after, the forwards finishing off a sweeping move downfield as the Hurricanes' pace and passing split open the Chiefs defence down the middle. Inside centre Alapati Leiua set up the Hurricanes' third, ghosting through and offloading for Savea to outpace the cover defence and score.
The Hurricanes simply outplayed the Chiefs as they ran in six-tries-to-one (Video available in Australia only)
Ahead 21-8 at the break, injury hit the Hurricanes early after the restart. Taylor was stretchered off with a nasty-looking ankle injury, and Franks disappeared after the recurrence of a niggling groin problem. But the home team lost little, and Savea crossed for his second and the bonus point try after 50 minutes.
All Blacks playmaker Aaron Cruden negotiated his return to Super Rugby after six weeks off with a broken thumb, playing the last 30 minutes, but was unable to ignite a lacklustre Chiefs backline.
Both teams lost players in the last quarter to yellow cards, the Hurricanes without Reggie Goodes and the Chiefs missing Brodie Retallick. But the Hurricanes kept running in the tries, Jack Lam and Victor Vito both crossing in the last 20 minutes to underline the most emphatic of wins.
Communication error please reload the page.
Russia's match at Montenegro was temporarily suspended shortly after kick-off when Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev appeared to be struck by a flare fired from the stands
Northampton star George North was knocked unconscious after scoring two tries during the Saints' 52-30 Aviva Premiership victory over London Wasps on Friday
George Coetzee and Tommy Fleetwood remained in contention to secure a place in the Masters as Andy Sullivan, Alexander Levy, Marcel Siem and Ross Fisher all missed out in Morocco
Andy Murray made a solid start in his quest for a third Miami Open title as he dispatched Donald Young to reach the third round in Florida
Kevin De Bruyne would consider a move back to Chelsea despite barely featuring in his time at Stamford Bridge, sources told ESPN
Who has driven in the most GPs before taking pole position?
Mudslinging and an agreement on something that will never happen, it's all in a day's work for a Formula One boss, as Maurice Hamilton explains...
Fallout continues from the NSW-Brumbies derby, with one Tahs forward - not Potgieter - surprised by other unsavoury comments during the game, Greg Growden reports
Greg Growden previews Super Rugby round 7. We've also got key stats, team news and all the line-ups to inform your ESPN Footytips Super Rugby picks
Will Mercedes dominate again? Can anybody catch up with the help of a rainstorm? And will the Red Bull/Renault relationship tear itself apart? All those questions and more will be answered at this weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix
Tiger Woods is confident of recovering from a poor run of form to qualify for the US Ryder Cup team in 2016, according to captain Davis Love III
Jonas Gutierrez has told Canal+ he will never forgive Newcastle for the way the club treated him during his battle with cancer, but wants to stay at St James' Park beyond this summer
Lionel Messi earned more than €1 million (£740,000) a week last year to make him the world's highest-paid player and Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was the best-paid coach, according to a new survey
Andy Murray has expressed fears that his game will regress without full-time coaching in a candid exchange with a fellow Twitter user as he prepares to add former world No.4 Jonas Bjorkman to his coaching team
Luis Suarez has laughed off the idea that the Barcelona players have set out to help Lionel Messi beat Cristiano Ronaldo to La Liga's top scorer award
Unbeaten heavyweight Dillian Whyte, 28, (14-0, 11 KOs) tells ESPN where his rivalry with Anthony Joshua stems from and outlines the plan for his career this year after returning from a doping ban in November
Some of the best fighters to ever glove up have plied their trade in the Octagon - now ESPN list the 10 best who have fought under the UFC banner
Who was the first Briton to win the British Grand Prix?
Where does Anthony Davidson's record of 24 Grands Prix without a point rank him?
How many F1 drivers have had one win, but done it at their home Grand Prix?