ad link

Blues

FULL-TIME
16     16

Chiefs

Super Rugby | Auckland
07:45 (GMT) | 26-05-2017
  • 81
Thank you for joining us, stay tuned for some more Super Rugby action.
  • 80
The Blues look to attack from the scrum but the ball is passed into touch and the referee blows the final whistle. That's it 16-16, the Blues will be disappointed as they had the game in their hands
  • 79
The ball is lost forward and the Blues look to run it from their own half. Scrum for the Blues as the Chiefs knocks a ball forward.
  • 78
Rieko Ioane runs it back powerfully before the Blues clears with a kick. Chiefs line-out just outside the home teams 22
  • 77
The Blues keeping their hands on the ball, playing phase after phase. The Chiefs defense holds up as the ball is lost forward by the Blues. Chiefs scrum inside their own 22. Pressure scrum but they manage to retain the ball and kick down field
  • 75
The Blues look to attack the midfield from the line-out
  • 74
Penalty for the Blues who opt for touch. Francis finds it close to the oppositions 22
  • 73
The Blues kicks from the line-out and McKenzie runs it back finding a few gaps.
  • 72
Francis misses a relatively easy kick to go in front. McKenzie kicks the reset and the Blues kicks back and McKenzie responds with a beautiful touch finder on the Blues 22
  • 71
The Blues wins a penalty in good attacking position. They opt for goal and Francis lines it up
  • 69
After the restart the Blues gets the ball back and starts attacking again inside the Chiefs half.
  • 68
Cruden fails to add the extras. 16 all
  • 67
Scrum for the Chiefs and they kick. Blues look to run it back. Pulu finds space but the ball changes hand and the Chiefs start building an attack from deep inside their own half that sees Faauli go over for the try
  • 63
The Blues secures their line-out ball and look to maul. The ball is knocked forward by a Chiefs hand. Scrum for the Blues in good attacking position
  • 62
Blues line-out inside their own half. They win a penalty and Francis for touch. He finds touch close to the away teams 10
  • 61
Kerr-Barlow feeds and the Chiefs look to attack before they kick it through into touch.
  • 60
The Chiefs clear from the line-out and the Blues takes it quick . They kick it up high. The ball is lost forward by the Blues. Scrum for the Chiefs on their own 10
  • 58
Line-out for the Chiefs on the halfway line. The ball is lost forward in the attack and the Blues scoops it up. And looks to attack. The ball is kicked into touch inside the Chiefs 22
  • 56
The Chiefs gets a free kick and Lowe kicks it down the middle. The Blues look to run it back
  • 55
The Blues look to maul from the line-out. Pulu looks to attack the blindside and puts a grubber kick through.
  • 54
After the restart the Blues look to attack, they win a penalty and opt for touch. Francis finds it on the away teams 10
  • 52
The Chiefs win a scrum penalty and opt for goal 35 away. Cruden slots it
  • 49
The Chiefs kicks the ball behind the goal line and the Blues dots it down for the 22 drop-out. The Chiefs look to run it from their own half.
  • 47
Defensive scrum for the Blues. Pulu feeds and Duffy clears with a kick, The Chiefs run it back before they kick and the ball changes hand.
  • 46
The ball is lost forward by the Blues and the Chiefs gathers it. They kick it into touch and the Blues gets a line-out in their own half. They make a meal of it and the Chiefs gets a scrum in good attacking position. Chiefs building a few phases before they lose the ball forward
  • 43
Blues scrum in their own half they look to attack the midfield and finds some space wide.
  • 42
After the restart both teams look to attack.
  • 41
Francis gets the 2nd half on the way and right from the word go the Blues are attacking again.Penalty for the Blues in good kicking position. They opt for goal and Francis slots it

Half Time

  • 40
Cruden fails to add the extras. That's it for the 1st half
  • 39
After the restart the Chiefs wins the ball back. And McKenzie finds some space to go over for his teams first try of the night
  • 38
Chiefs line-out close to their own 22. Lowe kicks and the Blues look to run it back. Penalty for the Blues at the breakdown. The Blues opt for goal 40m away and Francis slots it.
  • 35
Blues line-out close to their own 10. The Blues look to hold onto the ball. Pulu kicks and McKenzie fields it as the Chiefs look to attack.
  • 33
The Chiefs in possession 5m away from the try line. Edging closer before the Blues wins a penalty. They opt for touch and the pressure is relieved
  • 32
After the restart the Chiefs wins the ball back and looks to attack
  • 31
Francis adds the extras
  • 30
Blues scrum in striking distance. They look to attack the midfield building a few phases before good run and timed pass sees Rieko Ioane go over for the 1st try of the night
  • 28
The Chiefs takes it quick and looks to run. Blues line-out on the half soon after. They look to attack, gaining a few metres. Lowe looks to intercept but the ball is lost forward.
  • 26
The ball is turned over and the Blues look to attack from their own half. Francis decides to kick and finds touch deep inside the Chiefs half
  • 24
This time round the Chiefs wins a penalty at the scrum. They opt for touch and take a quick line-out. Chiefs on the attack inside the Blues half
  • 23
Kerr-Barlow feeds the scrum but the Blues wins a penalty at the Scrum. The Blues opts for touch but a poor kick by Francis fails to find touch. The Chiefs knock the ball forward. Blues scrum in striking position.
  • 21
Pulu feeds and the Blues look to attack but the Chiefs defense holds up. The Blues' momentum is stopped by a handling error. Scrum for the Chiefs on the halfway line
  • 19
The Blues secures the ball before they put it up high, the ball is lost forward by the Chiefs. Blues Scrum inside their own half
  • 18
Chiefs line-out on their own 10. They look to maul before Kerr-Barlow kicks
  • 17
From the reset the Chiefs look to attack and they find some space before the ball is turned over and the Blues look to attack before a player is tackled into touch
  • 16
After the reset kick the Blues wins a penalty 40m away and they opt for goal. This time Francis misses it
  • 14
Kerr-Barlow feedsthe scrum and the Chiefs attack the blinside. They get close but a grubber kick goes over the deadball line.
  • 13
Scrum reset
  • 12
After the restart the Blues loses the ball and the Chiefs look to attack. The ref blows for the scrum, Chiefs ball
  • 10
The Blues look to attack. They win a penalty and opt for goal 25m away . Francis lines it up. He strikes it perfectly as it goes sailing over
  • 9
The ball is over thrown by the Chiefs and the Blues gathers it. They look to attack. Blues penalty inside their own half. They opt for touch and find it close to the Chiefs 22
  • 7
After the restart both teams look to attack. The Chiefs wins a penalty on the halfway line and opt for goal
  • 6
McKenzie lines up his first kick of the night 35m away. He strikes it and it goes sailing down the middle
  • 4
Scrum reset. Kerr-Barlow feeds the scrum. The Chiefs look to attack wide with good timed cross-kick by Cruden. Chiefs attacking now building phase after phase. Penalty for the Chiefs in good kicking position as they opt for goal
  • 2
Blues kicks it out and the Chiefs gets a line-out close to the half. They lose their ball and the Blues look to attack wide before the ball is lost forward. Scrum for the Chiefs close to their own 10
  • 1
Cruden gets game on the way with a relatively deep kick-off. The ball is secured by the Blues before Pulu kicks to clear. A few kicks being exchanged before the Blues look to attack.
  • -5
It's a beautiful evening in Auckland for some running rugby. The players are doing their final preparation before taking to the field
  • -10
Both sets of players will look to impress in this match up as possible All Black positions are up for grabs
  • -20
The Chiefs know they MUST win to stay in touch with the table-topping Crusaders and keep alive their prospects of finishing first - which brings with it home ground advantage in the play-offs. The Blues MUST win just to keep alive their fast-fading hopes of a spot in the play-offs. Add to that the fact that it is an all-New Zealand derby and it is the perfect start to the weekend.
  • -30
Welcome to Auckland where the Blues will take on the Chiefs in this epic Super Rugby encounter
Mc blues logo 80x50
Blues
Mc chiefs logo 80x50
Chiefs
START LINE UP
  • 1 Ofa Tuungafasi
  • 2 James Parsons
  • 3 Charlie Faumuina
  • 4 Patrick Tuipulotu
  • 5 Scott Scrafton
  • 6 Steven Luatua
  • 7 Blake Gibson
  • 8 Akira Ioane
  • 9 Augustine Pulu
  • 10 Piers Francis
  • 11 Rieko Ioane
  • 12 Sonny Bill Williams
  • 13 George Moala
  • 14 Matt Duffie
  • 15 Michael Collins
RESERVES
  • 16 Hame Faiva
  • 17 Alex Hodgman
  • 18 Sione Mafileo
  • 19 Gerald Cowley-Tuioti
  • 20 Kara Pryor
  • 21 Sam Nock
  • 22 Stephen Perofeta
  • 23 TJ Faiane
START LINE UP
  • 1 Kane Hames
  • 2 Nathan Harris
  • 3 Nepo Laulala
  • 4 Dominic Bird
  • 5 Brodie Retallick
  • 6 Mitchell Brown
  • 7 Sam Cane
  • 8 Liam Messam
  • 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow
  • 10 Aaron Cruden
  • 11 James Lowe
  • 12 Johnny Faauli
  • 13 Anton Lienert-Brown.
  • 14 Tim Nanai-Williams
  • 15 Damian McKenzie
RESERVES
  • 16 Hika Elliot
  • 17 Siegfried Fisiihoi
  • 18 Atunaisa Moli
  • 19 Taleni Seu
  • 20 Lachlan Boshier
  • 21 Jonathan Taumateine
  • 22 Solomon Alaimalo
  • 23 Shaun Stevenson
Mc article hika elliot chiefs 800

SR Preview: Round 14, Part One

Wed, 24 May 2017 22:04

IN THE SUPER RUGBY SPOTLIGHT: When teams enter 'must win' territory, it makes for great entertainment.

The Chiefs know they MUST win to stay in touch with the table-topping Crusaders and keep alive their prospects of finishing first - which brings with it home ground advantage in the play-offs.

The Blues MUST win just to keep alive their fast-fading hopes of a spot in the play-offs.

Add to that the fact that it is an all-New Zealand derby and it is the perfect start to the weekend.

Then there is a slight reprieve when the Reds host the Western Force in an all-Australian derby where only dented honour is at stake.

In Part One of the preview, we look at the Friday matches!

Friday, May 26:

Blues v Chiefs
(Eden Park, Auckland - Kick-off: 19.35; 07.35 GMT)

It is a distraction the Chiefs could have done without - news that yet another player is heading abroad.

Chiefs hooker Hika Elliot has become the latest New Zealand player to depart Aotearoa for the lure of the more lucrative Euro.

Elliot has signed with French club US Oyonnax.

Elliot joins a number of Chiefs heading overseas after this season - including scrumhalf Tawera Kerr-Barlow (Toulon), flyhalf Aaron Cruden (Montpellier) and wing James Lowe (Leinster).

Chiefs coach Dave Rennie did not have much time to ponder the sideshow, as his team needs to bounce back from last week's loss to the Crusaders.

And their opponents are also coming off a heart-breaking loss - to the Stormers in Cape Town.

"The Blues will be pretty desperate this week," Rennie told a media briefing.

"If the Blues lose this weekend, their chances of qualifying [for the play-offs] are gone."

He said the Chiefs have not counted out the fact that they can still finish top of the standings.

"However, a couple of other sides need to knock over the Crusaders," Rennie said, adding: "We will control what we can and that involves [producing] a good performance this week.

"They [matches between the Chiefs and Blues] are always massive encounters."

Blues coach Tana Umaga said the team faced a significant test after the demanding one-off game in South Africa and he had adjusted their training to suit this week.

"This is our final derby game of the regular season and I know the team will want to produce their best performance of the season," Umaga said.

"We need to produce an 80-minute performance across the board and ensure we are disciplined in that approach."

Recent results:
2017: Chiefs won 41-26, Hamilton
2016: Chiefs won 29-23, Hamilton
2015: Chiefs won 23-16, Hamilton
2015: Chiefs won 23-18, Albany
2014:  Chiefs won 11-8, Auckland
2014: Chiefs won 32-20, New Plymouth

Prediction: The Chiefs have won their last 11 games in a row against the Blues, though those wins have come by an average margin of just eight points. The Chiefs have won three of their last four regular season away games against fellow New Zealand opposition; three of those four games were won by the team trailing at half-time. The Blues have won five of their last seven Friday fixtures on home turf, including each of their last two; the last time they won more in succession was a seven-game streak from 2012 to 2014. The Blues have won only one of their last 21 New Zealand derbies, despite leading at half-time in four of their last seven. The Chiefs will be looking to avoid back-to-back losses for the first time since the 2015 play-offs when they visited the Highlanders. While the Blues will always have a chance, given the talent at their disposal, they have simply not been consistent enough to overcome a team of the Chiefs' calibre - who will win by 15 points.

Teams:

Blues: 15 Michael Collins, 14 Matt Duffie, 13. George Moala, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Piers Francis, 9 Augustine Pulu, 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Blake Gibson, 6 Steven Luatua, 5 Scott Scrafton, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Ofa Tu'ungafasi.
Replacements: 16 Hame Faiva, 17 Alex Hodgman, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 20 Kara Pryor, 21 Sam Nock, 22 Stephen Perofeta, 23 TJ Faiane.

Chiefs: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Tim Nanai-Williams, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Johnny Faauli, 11 James Lowe, 10 Aaron Cruden (co-captain), 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Liam Messam, 7 Sam Cane (co-captain), 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Kane Hames.
Replacements: 16 Hika Elliot, 17 Siegfried Fisi'ihoi, 18 Atu Moli, 19 Taleni Seu, 20 Lachlan Boshier, 21 Jonathan Taumateine, 22 Solomon Alaimalo, 23 Shaun Stevenson.

Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Angus Mabey (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)

Reds v Western Force
(Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane - Kick-off: 19.45; 17.45 AWST; 09.45)

The build-up to this match - as has been for the last couple of months - has been overshadowed by the sideshows - the uncertainty over the future of the Western Force and Melbourne Rebels.

It has become such a big issues that captain Matt Hodgson has stepped in and started counselling his teammates.

Coach Dave Wessels praised Hodgson for his efforts "off the field" and what it has meant to the team.

Hodgson, a qualified mental health first-aid worker and an ambassador for the Living charity, has quietly been counselling players who are coming under increasing pressure over the uncertainty of their playing future.

"He has done a tremendous amount for our group," Wessels said.

"He is one of those guys the players play for and it is great to have him back [from injury].."

Wessels said this match is huge in the context of the Australian conference and his men are up for the challenge.

"We were very disappointed with our performance against the Highlanders and irrespective of who we are playing it's important that we respond with the same intensity that has been evident for the majority of our season so far," the coach said.

Reds coach Nick Stiles said that they played "relatively well" over the last month.

"We have beaten the Kings, we have beaten the Rebels and everyone said we should have beaten the Waratahs as well," he said.

"We have four games to go plat for, for the here and now, but also for the future of the organisation."

Recent results:
2017: Force won 26-19, Perth
2016: Force won 22-6, Brisbane
2015: Reds won 32-10, Perth
2015: Reds won 18-6, Brisbane
2014: Force won 30-20, Perth
2014: Force won 32-29, Brisbane

Prediction: The Force have won six and drawn one of their last nine games against the Reds, including wins in their last two meetings. A Round 12 win against the Rebels sees the Reds hunt for back-to-back wins for the first time since Round 17, 2014. Five of the last eight Australian derbies played on a Friday night have been won by the away team on the day. The Western Force have conceded just three tries this season when defending for seven or more phases, the joint fewest of any team in the competition. Eto Nabuli has had 11 try involvements so far this season (eight tries, three try assists), the joint fifth most of any player and the most of any player from outside New Zealand. It is tough to call, but we are going with the home team, the Reds,  to sneak a late winner - by five points or less.

Teams:

Reds: 15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Chris Kuridrani, 13 Samu Kerevi (captain), 12 Duncan Paia'aua, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Scott Higginbotham, 7 George Smith, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Lukhan Tui, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Sam Talakai, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Sef Fa'agase.
Replacements: 16 Alex Mafi, 17 Kirwan Sanday, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Izack Rodda, 20 Adam Korczyk, 21 James Tuttle, 22 Jake McIntyre, 23 Lachlan Maranta.

Western Force: 15 Marcel Brache, 14 James Verity-Amm, 13 Curtis Rona, 12 Bill Meakes, 11 Alex Newsome, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Michael Ruru, 8 Isireli Naisarani, 7 Matt Hodgson (captain), 6 Ross Haylett-Petty, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Matt Philip, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Heath Tessmann, 1 Francois van Wyk.
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Pek Cowan, 18 Tetera Faulkner, 19 Richie Arnold, 20 Richard Hardwick, 21 Mitchell Short, 22 Luke Burton, 23 Luke Morahan.

Referee: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Rohan Hoffmann (Australia), Jordan Way (Australia)
TMO: Damien Mitchelmore (Australia)

Compiled by Jan de Koning
@king365ed
@rugby365com

* Statistics provided by Opta Sports & sportguru.info

Mc article blues v chiefs match action 800

Super stalemate at wet Eden Park

Fri, 26 May 2017 07:04

SUPER RUGBY REPORT: The Blues and Chiefs played to a 16-all draw at Eden Park on Friday, the first time ever the two franchises were involved in a stalemate in the competition.

In ever-worsening conditions, with monsoon-like rain in the second half, the Chiefs outscored the home team by two tries to one.

However, the trusted boot of Blues flyhalf Pierce Francis - who kicked three penalties and a conversion - kept the Blues in the lead until some magic by Chiefs fullback Damian McKenzie allowed the visitors to draw level.

Despite some intense efforts from both teams, the conditions helped conspire to leave the sides deadlocked.

Rieko Ioane and Sonny Bill Williams both made their cases for All Blacks selection for the British and Irish Lions Tests.

The Blues wing, Ioane, profited from a trademark Williams offload - who is also trying to state his All Blacks claims - to score the opening try in Auckland.

Damian McKenzie and Johnny Faauli scored tries for the Chiefs in a draw that did not help either side in the New Zealand conference.

The Chiefs are likely to slip further behind the Crusaders and Hurricanes, while the Blues' season is all but over.

In a match which started in damp and cold weather and ended in pouring rain, the Blues had a chance to snap the deadlock with a penalty eight minutes from full-time.

But Northampton-bound flyhalf Piers Francis, who has been called into the England squad for their tour of Argentina, missed what should have been a routine kick.

The Chiefs had banked on a win to continue putting pressure on the Crusaders, while the Blues needed maximum points to keep alive their slim mathematical hopes of making the top eight.

The Blues have not beaten a New Zealand side since they downed the Highlanders in Round One last year and they have not won against the Chiefs, their nearest neighbours, in 12 matches dating back to 2011.

"We did enough to win. Piers had that opportunity with that kick at the end but it wasn't to be. But a draw is better than a loss," Blues captain James Parsons said.

"But, we've got to get better at finishing these New Zealand derbies."

Chiefs skipper Sam Cane agreed with Parsons that it was an unsatisfactory outcome.

"A draw's supposed to make you feel good but talking to both of us you probably wouldn't know that. To be completely honest we [the Chiefs] were probably a wee bit fortunate."

Hanging over the heads of all the New Zealand sides is the Lions Test series next month, with the All Blacks squad yet to be finalised.

Several players on both sides needed big performances to prove they remain frontline Test material, and it was 20-year-old Ioane who put his hand up highest.

He was constantly looking for work and was rewarded with the opening try when he was on hand to finish a move sparked by Williams' offload.

Where the Chiefs excelled was from regaining possession at the kick-off.

The first time, after Ioane's try, led to repeated attacks on the Blues line before the Chiefs undid their good work by giving away a penalty.

But the second time, after a Francis penalty, Brodie Retallick recovered the kick-off and the Chiefs went wide for McKenzie to scamper 40 metres to score.

Francis kicked three penalties for the Blues and converted Ioane's try while the Chiefs points came from the tries to McKenzie and Faauli, with McKenzie and Aaron Cruden both kicking penalties.

Man of the match: Steven Luatua and Blake Gibson put in massive workloads, Pierce Francis and Augustine Pulu did the basics very well in testing conditions. Then there was Rieko Ioane, not just on defence, but also making the hard yards with the ball in hand.  Chiefs prop Kane Hames won his battle with All Black veteran Charlie Faumuina. However, you can always bank on Chiefs fullback Damian McKenzie to create the magic that turns the game and he wins our award.

The scorers:

For the Blues:
Try:
 R Ioane
Con: Francis
Pens: Francis 3

For the Chiefs:
Tries:
 McKenzie, Faauli
Pens: McKenzie, Cruden

Teams:

Blues: 15 Michael Collins, 14 Matt Duffie, 13. George Moala, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Piers Francis, 9 Augustine Pulu, 8 Akira Ioane, 7 Blake Gibson, 6 Steven Luatua, 5 Scott Scrafton, 4 Patrick Tuipulotu, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Ofa Tu'ungafasi.
Replacements: 16 Hame Faiva, 17 Alex Hodgman, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Gerard Cowley-Tuioti, 20 Kara Pryor, 21 Sam Nock, 22 Stephen Perofeta, 23 TJ Faiane.

Chiefs: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Tim Nanai-Williams, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Johnny Faauli, 11 James Lowe, 10 Aaron Cruden (co-captain), 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Liam Messam, 7 Sam Cane (co-captain), 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Kane Hames.
Replacements: 16 Hika Elliot, 17 Siegfried Fisi'ihoi, 18 Atu Moli, 19 Taleni Seu, 20 Lachlan Boshier, 21 Jonathan Taumateine, 22 Solomon Alaimalo, 23 Shaun Stevenson.

Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Angus Mabey (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)

 

Rieko Ioane (30min)
TRIES
Damian McKenzie (39min) and Johnny Faauli (67min)
Piers Francis (31min)
CONVERSIONS
Piers Francis (11min), Piers Francis (38min), and Piers Francis (41min)
PENALTIES
Damian McKenzie (6min) and Aaron Cruden (52min)
 
PENALTY TRIES
 
DROP GOALS
 
 
 
VENUE Auckland
REFEREE Angus Gardner (Australia)