Chiefs beat Reds 35 -17


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Flyhalf Stephen Donald scored a try among 20 points as the Waikato Chiefs took a bonus point from a four-try, 35-17 win over the Queensland Reds in Super 14 rugby Friday.

The Chiefs twice exploited the Queensland pack at lineouts to create tries, one scored by Donald, and exposed defensive frailties wide out as wingers Sosene Anesi, Sitiveni Sivivatu and replacement fullback Loki Crichton also scored tries.

Donald, who has one of the most mixed records among the Super 14’s regular goalkickers, landed three conversions and three penalties from seven attempts to embellish the Chiefs’ second straight win in their first home match of the season.

The Reds trailed 15-0 in the first half before scoring a try through Wallabies winger Drew Mitchell and fell behind 35-10 in the second before scoring a consolation try through 18-year-old wing replacement Caleb Brown.

Wallabies flyhalf Elton Flatley converted both tries and kicked a penalty.

Building on a huge set piece advantage, All Blacks loose-forwards Sione Lauaki, Marty Holah and Steven Bates gave the Chiefs control of the loose as Queensland showed reluctance to commit players to breakdowns.

New Zealand sevens representative Anesi and All Blacks teammates Sivivatu and Mils Muliaina also strained a compact Queensland defense with strong running wide out in the backline.

“I think we played pretty well in some sections of the game and we’re pretty pleased to come away with a decent win and a bonus point,” Holah said. “We put a lot of pressure on their scrum and made it difficult for them to release the ball.” Holah said the Chiefs were happy to celebrate their first home match of the season with a win and, equally, to commemorate the 50th appearance in Chiefs colors of their captain Jono Gibbes.

“The big man’s been pretty influential over the last few years and it was good to have him back on field and to celebrate with great win,” Holah said.

Mitchell showed a deft turn of foot to score Queensland’s first try in the 27th minute, sneaking through a narrow gap between the closing defense and the corner flag.

Sivivatu combined with Holah and Lauaki to score from a lineout in the 46th minute and Crichton won the race to his own kick over Mitchell’s head to give the Chiefs a 64th-minute bonus point try.

“The difference between the teams was commitment,” said Reds captain Chris Latham. “The Chiefs came out more committed, determined to do their absolute best in attack and defense and that was the difference.” The loss was the Reds’ fourth in a row.


Chiefs 35

(Sosene Anesi, Stephen Donald, Sitiveni Sivivatu, Loki Crichton tries; Donald 3 conversions, 3 penalties), 

Reds 17
(Drew Mitchell, Caleb Brown tries; Elton Flatley 2 conversions, penalty).

Source : Sapa-AP /jlb

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