Cape Town - The Hurricanes held off a brave comeback from the Chiefs to secure a 22-18 win in Wellington to increase their lead at the top of the SupeRugby standings.
The Chiefs led their hosts 13-10 at the break as Charlie Ngatai scored on the brink of half time.
Ma''a Nonu had given the Hurricanes the perfect start when he crashed over in the 9th minute. James Marshall slotted the conversion.
The Chiefs fought their way back into the game which was brilliantly contested throughout the first forty minutes.
The Hurricanes started the second half much in the same way the started the first.
The 'Canes spurned the chance to kick for post on three separate occasions earlier in the second half which ultimately paid dividends when Ardi Savea crashed over to put the Wellington side back in front.
With the Hurricanes reinvigorated and on attack, Liam Squire was sent to the sin bin for a dangerous tackle on Nonu after 48 minutes.
Nonu was over the line shortly after but coughed up the ball to let the Chiefs off the hook.
McKenzie failed with a long distance penalty attempt in the 57th minute to send the Chiefs back in front despite being down to 14 men.
The TMO denied the Hurricanes a brilliant team try for a forward pass.
Ma'a Nonu scored an intercept try, his fiftieth in SupeRugby, which James Marshall converted to stretch the Hurricanes lead to 22-13 with just over 10 minutes left to play.
Sam Cane crashed over for the Chiefs in the 73rd minute to reduce the gap but Damian McKenzie missed a relatively easy conversion, meaning the Chiefs would need to score a try to snatch victory.
Augustine Pulu scored under the posts to send the visitors in front but the TMO again overturned the try after spotting a knock on in the build up to the try. The Chiefs can count themselves hard done by as the knock on was caused by foul play.
The Hurricanes failed to clear the ball from the resulting scrum leaving the Chiefs with a scrum five metres out with no time left on the clock.
The Chiefs conceded a penalty from their own scrum to hand the hosts a crucial win - their eleventh of the season.
Tries: Ma'a Nonu x2, Ardi Savea
Conversions: James Marshall x2
Penalties: James Marshall
Tries: Charlie Ngatai, Sam Cane
Conversions: Damian McKenzie
Penalties: Damian McKenzie x2
15 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Conrad Smith (captain), 12 Ma'a Nonu, 11 Julian Savea, 10 James Marshall, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Victor Vito, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 James Broadhurst, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Ben Franks, 2 Motu Matu'u, 1 Reggie Goodes
Substitutes: 16 Dane Coles, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 19 Mark Abbott/Callum Gibbins, 20 Blade Thomson, 21 Chris Smylie, Otere Black, 22 Rey Lee-Lo
15 Tom Marshall, 14 Hosea Gear, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 James Lowe, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Michael Leitch, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Liam Messam (captain), 5 Michael Fitzgerald, 4 Michael Allardice, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Pauliasi Manu
Substitutes: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 Mitchell Graham, 19 Liam Squire, 20 Maama Vaipulu, 21 Augustine Pulu, 22 Andrew Horrell, 23 Bryce Heem