Super Rugby

Chiefs edge Queensland Reds




Chiefs beat Queensland Reds 25-27 in a tight Super Rugby Pacific Trans-Tasman clash at Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane.

The Chiefs continue their Super Rugby dominance over Australian opposition with a seventh win in eight matches while making it six victories in eight away to the Queensland Reds.

The Reds’ horrible record versus New Zealand opposition stretches to 22 losses in 24 Super Rugby games, including their last five Trans-Tasman clashes.

Back-to-back defeats for the first time this season sees Queensland drop out of the top four in the SR table, with the Chiefs overtaking the Brisbane side.

Brad Thorn will be disappointed with his team’s ill discipline because Harry Wilson and Jock Campbell’s yellow cards, either side of the interval, cost nine points.

Cortez Ratima, Samisoni Taukei’aho, and Pita Gus Sowakula scored for the visitors, who fought back from 13-7 down following Lawson Creighton’s boot and Wilson’s opener.

Bryn Gatland, flawless from the kicking tee, added two goals and three conversions for 13 valuable points.

Josh Flook and Hunter Paisami also crossed for the hosts, who scored late through Paisami to set up nervy final minutes at Suncorp.

Captain Tate McDermott had another cracker, the scrumhalf set up two tries after another superb display for the Reds.

Creighton kicked two penalties and two conversions (10 pts), but the young playmaker did miss a second-half goal and conversion, which made the difference in a tight contest.

The Chiefs scored long after the hooter to cancel out a late Queensland Reds’ converted try to make it 13-all at halftime

The Chiefs had the better of the first half, but the teams went into the shed level at two penalties and a try apiece.

Clayton McMillan’s men had 65% possession and 73% territory in the opening stanza.

The New Zealanders made 11 clean breaks to three, but they conceded nine turnovers and six handling errors as the Aussies kept them at bay.

Both kickers traded a couple of penalties as the sides were deadlocked 6-6 after 27 error-strewn minutes.

Creighton opened the scoring before two Gatland goals put the visitors in front.

Some smart thinking by McDermott, to catch Kaylum Boshier as a lazy runner, won his team a game-levelling penalty.

Creighton made no mistake. Thorn’s men struck again, soon afterwards.

The Reds went 13-6 ahead through Wilson when the number eight barged his way through a maul to dot down after the half-hour mark.

The score was rather fortuitous because the initial on-field call from referee Paul Williams was “no try, held up”.

However, after a TMO review, footage showed that Wilson had just about kept control of the ball as he fell on the try line.

But an eight-minute surge before halftime saw the Chiefs finally cross the whitewash.

Several Chiefs’ attacks were stalled by illegal means leading to a couple of late scrums near the left sideline.

But the pressure told. A series of scrums saw the men from the Waikato push the Queenslanders off the ball and behind their goal line before a left-shoulder set up the score.

The Kiwi pack wheeled the scrum to the left. Sowakula picked up the ball, played a pop-pass Ratima to his left, and the halfback beat McDermott to the corner flag.

Gatland slotted the touchline conversion to level for the third time in the game.

The Chiefs keep ahead of the Reds, whose poor discipline costs Thorn’s side

The Hamilton men struck soon after the break to open up a seven-point lead.

A sustained attack, following a lineout five metres out, saw the visitors edge ahead.

Taukei’aho took Jonah Lowe’s pop-pass from the ruck, slipped a poor tackle and burst through non-existent defenders to score.

Creighton missed a 51st-minute penalty, but the Reds struck from the next attack.

McDermott gathered Tiatia’s charge down a clearance and broke from halfway to set up Flook. The winger cut inside the recovering Tiatia before taking Nankivell over the line.

Creighton could not convert, but the hosts were in the hunt.

Fraser McReight, the standout Super Rugby Pacific flanker, almost scored before the hour.

McReight chased a grubber, but he lost the ball when he was tackled from behind. It was a let-off for the Chiefs, who had switched off after Taukei’aho’s score.

Campbell went off for a deliberate knock-down that stopped a promising Chiefs attack.

The fullback’s intervention was in vain as the visitors struck from the following penalty.

Luke Jacobson opted for an attacking scrum. The Chiefs camped on the Reds’ goal-line before Sowakula crashed over for his seventh Super Rugby try next to the poles.

Gatland’s third conversion extended the lead to nine points (27-18) with 15 minutes to play.

Samipeni Finau’s red card for a high shot on McReight saw the Chiefs concede late on.

McDermott, who had a hand in Flook’s score, sent Paisami away next to the posts. Creighton converted, but time ran out.

Final Score: Reds 25 (13) Chiefs 27 (13)


Tries – Wilson, Flook, Paisami
Pen – Creighton (2)
Con – Creighton (2)
Drop –
Cards – Wilson (Yellow, 47′), Campbell (Yellow, 62′)

Tries – Ratima, Taukei’aho, Sowakula
Pen – Gatland (2)
Con – Gatland (3)
Drop –
Cards – Finau (Red, 76′)

Match Officials
Referee: Paul Williams
Assistant Ref 1: Jordan Way
Assistant Ref 2: Reuben Keane
TMO: Brett Cronan


Queensland Reds: 15 Jock Campbell, 14 Josh Flook, 13 Hunter Paisami, 12 Hamish Stewart, 11 Filipo Daugunu, 10 Lawson Creighton, 9 Tate McDermott (captain), 8 Harry Wilson, 7 Fraser McReight, 6 Angus Scott-Young, 5 Angus Blyth, 4 Ryan Smith, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Richie Asiata, 1 Harry Hoopert.

Replacements: 16 Matt Faessler, 17 Dane Zander, 18 Feao Fotuaika, 19 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 20 Seru Uru, 21 Spencer Jeans, 22 Floyd Aubrey, 23 Mac Grealy.

Chiefs: 15 Chase Tiatia, 14 Jonah Lowe, 13 Alex Nankivell, 12 Rameka Poihipi, 11 Quinn Tupaea, 10 Bryn Gatland, 9 Cortez Ratima, 8 Pita Gus Sowakula, 7 Kaylum Boshier, 6 Luke Jacobson (captain), 5 Tupou Vaa’i, 4 Josh Lord, 3 Angus Ta’avao, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 1 Aidan Ross.

16 Bradley Slater, 17 Atu Moli, 18 George Dyer, 19 Naitoa Ah Kuoi, 20 Samipeni Finau, 21 Mitch Brown, 22 Xavier Roe, 23 Rivez Reihana.

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