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Blues make Chiefs feel the 'Payne' in Hamilton

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Article Published: Saturday 26 March 2011|

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A crucial second half try by Jared Payne helped the Blues to a tight 13-16 Super Rugby victory over the Chiefs in Hamilton.

The match was played in very wet conditions which prevented free flowing rugby and only three tries were scored in the match.

The Chiefs got the perfect start as Liam Messam scored the first try of the match after 38 seconds but the Blues hit back in the second half and snatched the win.

Luke McAlister kicked 11 points and created the Blues only try in a match that was spoiled by bad weather and collapsed scrums.

The Chiefs scored a try through captain Liam Messam inside the opening minute and led 10-6 at halftime, before McAlister created a 53rd minute try for center Jared Payne giving the Blues the lead for the first time in the match at 13-10.

The former All Black flyhalf then sealed the win with a long-range penalty goal after the Chiefs had fought back to tie the scores.

The match was played in constant, torrential rain which made the field slippery and handling almost impossible. In those conditions kicking became a decisive weapon as both teams set out to win territory and test their opponents' defense against the high ball.

All three of the match's tries came either directly or indirectly from defensive errors against kicks.

The win leaves the Blues with four wins, a draw and a loss after six matches; provisionally at the top of the New Zealand conference ahead of Sunday's match between the Crusaders and the Sharks in London.

The Chiefs have two wins from six games and are at the bottom of the five-team conference. but their performance Saturday showed they are a team of much greater mettle than that standing suggests.

They fully stretched the Blues from the 40th second of the first half when Messam won a length-of-the-field foot race to the ball behind the visitors goalline.

Chiefs flyhalf Mike Delany had slipped clearing the ball behind his goalline and the Blues sought to attack.

But when center Rene Ranger spilled the ball in midfield, the Chiefs kicked through and Messam pounced on the ball over the line after Payne had failed to clear.

Prop Faka'aunoa Taumalolo scored the Chiefs' second try when the Blues again failed to defend against a kick from Delany.

Chiefs winger Lelia Masaga ignited a counter attack and the ball swept through Richard Kahui and Sitiveni Sivivatu in midfield before Taumalolo drove over from a series of rucks on the line.

McAlister pegged back the margin with two penalties but Waikato took a 10-6 lead to halftime.

Payne's try in the 13th minute of the second half was decisive.

Fullback Isaia Toeava made a dashing break down the left flank and when the ball passed through the backline, McAlister chipped behind the defense and Payne won the race to score.

Delany tied the scores with a 62nd-minute penalty before McAlister re-established the Blues three-point margin with his final goal.

Final Score Chiefs 13 Blues 16

Scorers

Chiefs
Tries - L Messam, S.Taumalolo
Pen - M Delany
Con -
Drop -
Cards -

Blues
Tries - J Payne
Pen - L McAlister 3
Con - L McAlister
Drop -
Cards -

Match Officials
Referee: Ian Smith
Assistant Ref 1:JonathonWhite
Assistant Ref 2:Ben Skeen
TMO:Garratt Williamson

Teams

Chiefs :1. Sona Taumalolo,2. Hika Elliot,3. Nathan White,4. Craig Clarke,5. Isaac Ross,6. Scott Waldrom,7. Tanerau Latimer,8. Liam Messam (Captain),9. Brendon Leonard,10. Mike Delany,11. Sitiveni Sivivatu,12. Tana Umaga,13. Richard Kahui,14. Lelia Masaga,15. Tim Nanai-Williams

Reserves:16. Aled de Malmanche,17. Toby Smith,18. Culum Retallick,19. Fritz Lee,20. Taniela Moa,21. Dwayne Sweeney,22. Save Tokula

Blues :1. Tony Woodcock 2. Keven Mealamu (c) 3. John Afoa 4. Kurtis Haiu 5. Anthony Boric (50th game) 6. Jerome Kaino 7. Luke Braid 8. Peter Saili 9. Alby Mathewson 10. Stephen Brett 11. Joe Rokocoko 12. Luke McAlister 13. Jared Payne 14. Rene Ranger 15. Isaia Toeava

Replacements : 16 Tom McCartney 17 Tevita Mailau 18 Teofilo Paulo 19 Mat Luamanu 20 Chris Smylie 21 Lachie Munro 22 (Benson Stanley/Sherwin Stowers)

 
 
 
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