Super Rugby

Chiefs still without a win after draw with Hurricanes




The Chiefs and the Hurricanes drew 23-all in the New Zealand derby at FMG Stadium, Hamilton.

Both teams had chances to take the spoils but handling errors and a Damian McKenzie’s missed shot at goal meant the sides could not be separated.

The Chiefs had won four of their last five against the Hurricanes but have had a terrible start to this campaign and are still without a win in 2019.

Damian McKenzie missed a second-half penalty to put the Chiefs ahead as the two sides played out a stalemate.

There were scares for both teams at the end of the clash

Liam Mitchell knocked on a few metres out with time almost up after Marty McKenzie had dropped the ball over the dead-ball line with less than two minutes remaining.

John Plumtree’s side had another chance after the hooter, going 13 phases before another turnover started a Chiefs’ counter-attack. But, again, the ball was knocked on and the game over.

Chiefs had a slender halftime lead

The Chiefs held the advantage at halftime thanks to Anton Lienert-Brown and Damian McKenzie’s first-half tries.

McKenzie kicked five from six for a match-haul of 18 points as he kept his team in touch with the visitors.

Matt Proctor had cancelled out Lienert-Brown’s try after Beauden Barrett’s penalty had put the Canes on the board.

McKenzie and the Barrett brothers traded penalties before the Canes took an early lead after the interval.

Wes Goosen crashes over after a sublime Chase Tiatia midfield break to put the visitors in front.

McKenzie levelled before the final quarter, but could not take advantage of a kickable penalty, which proved costly.

The draw means that Colin Copper’s men are still to taste victory this Super Rugby season.

Fast start for Chiefs

The home team, paying homage to the franchise’s first Super Rugby kit, hit the ground running when Lienert-Brown charged down Chase Tiatia’s clearance.

Beauden Barrett’s wayward pass missed Ngani Laumape, Tiatia cleaned up but his kick was too low, allowing the second five-eighth to block it and gather and race away in the second minute.

The Hurricanes were on the board with a penalty and soon took the lead. Beauden Barrett called for the ball to the open side of a five-metre attacking scrum.

He drifted subtly, taking two defenders with his, delayed his pass and put Proctor away.

The outside centre burst through a gap, slipping Sean Wainui’s tackle before carrying Mitchell Karpik over the line with him.

Video Highlights: Chiefs versus Hurricanes

The teams were trading blows, the Chiefs striking next following a scrum and some smart hands by number eight Tyler Adron.

The Canadian international broke off the scrum and found Brad Weber with a one-hand offload. Weber was hauled down by the covering Ngani Laumape. As the halfback was going to ground, he threw a speculative pass.

Ardron, still in support, scooped up the bouncing ball and popped to Marty McKenzie. The stand-off played Manu and the 25-year-old burst through space, beating two tackles.

He found Damian McKenzie in support. The younger McKenzie, playing fullback, raced away to make it 14-10 after he converted his score.

Jordie Barrett kicked a long-range penalty to reduce the deficit to one, but some ill-discipline was costing the visitors.

Waikato ramp up the tempo before the half

Manu went close, opting for the big aerial dive in the corner, but Beauden Barrett tracked back and dislodged the ball out of the centre’s hands and into touch.

Ardie Savea won a vital turnover to halt another Chiefs’ attack, soon afterwards. Vaea Fifita is caught offsides and McKenzie extended his side’s lead from the tee.

Manu and Ardon were at it again, putting the hosts in good position inside the visitor’s 22 after two big carries. The Hurricanes cover defence got back and stop the attack, but conceded a penalty.

Brodie Retallick opted for a scrum; he wanted to turn the screw before halftime. A couple of reset scrums resulted in another penalty to the hosts.

This time they took the points and momentum into the shed.

Plumtree’s team-talk had the desired effect

His team came out of the changing rooms and upped the pace, attacking central midfield as they looked to suck in defenders before releasing their outside backs.

The Hurricanes had more territory and possession, made more running metres and won more rucks but found themselves playing catch-up.

Karpik was caught at the ruck for not rolling away, and Beauden Barrett cut the gap to four. By now Tiatia was starting to have an impact on proceedings.

He burst through a hole and into the Chiefs’ 22 before sending Goosen away. The winger was ankle-tapped by Lienert-Brown but his momentum carried him over the whitewash.

Goosen’s score put the Canes back in front and Barrett’s conversion made it 20-23 in the 53rd-minute.

The Wellington outfit has been inconsistent this season; coming from behind to beat the Waratahs but blown away by the Crusaders. The battered the brittle Brumbies and left it late against the Highlanders.

Another counter-attack was killed because of offsides and McKenzie levelled with a monster 56-metre penalty, going into the final quarter.

Etene Nanai-Seturo was away down the sideline after Adron won another turnover from Jordie Barrett. Nanai-Seturo kicked ahead but Tiatia got back and gathered; however, he knocked on giving the Chiefs and attacking scrum.

The hosts won another set-piece penalty, giving McKenzie a shot from near the sideline. He missed, his only blotch on an otherwise superb performance.

It gave way to an error-ridden last five minutes. Mitchell’s clumsy handling with the Hurricanes camped on the opposition’s try line was awful.

The chance came after Marty McKenzie’s fumble over the in-goal area which resulted in the attacking scrum under the posts.

By now, nobody wanted to win this derby.

Final Score: Chiefs 23 (20) Hurricanes 23 (13)


Tries – Lienert-Brown, McKenzie
Pen – McKenzie (3)
Con – McKenzie (2)
Drop –
Cards –

Tries – Proctor, Goosen
Pen – B. Barrett (2), J. Barrett
Con – B. Barrett (2)
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Mike Fraser
Assistant Ref 1: Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 2: Nick Hogan
TMO: Shane McDermott


Chiefs: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Tumua Manu, 12 Anton Lienert-Brown, 11 Ataata Moeakiola, 10 Marty McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Tyler Ardron, 7 Mitchell Karpik, 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Michael Allardice, 4 Brodie Retallick (captain), 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Aidan Ross.

Replacements: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Ryan Coxon, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Taleni Seu, 20 Luke Jacobson, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Alex Nankivell, 23 Etene Nanai-Seturo.

Hurricanes: 15 Chase Tiatia, 14 Jordie Barrett, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Wes Goosen, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Thomas Perenara, 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Du’Plessis Kirifi, 6 Reed Prinsep, 5 Vaea Fifita, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Ben May, 2 Dane Coles (captain), 1 Toby Smith.

Replacements: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 Fraser Armstrong, 18 Alex Fidow, 19 Liam Mitchell, 20 Heiden Bedwell-Curtis, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 23 Salesi Rayasi.

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