Hamilton - Wholesale changes to the Chiefs produced the desired result
on Saturday as the defending Super Rugby champions down the Lions 38-8
at Waikato Stadium.AS IT HAPPENED: Chiefs v Lions
The bonus point win, the Chiefs first victory
in six weeks, came after coach Dave Rennie made 14 changes to his
matchday squad thrashed last week by the Brumbies.
defeat followed losses against the Crusaders and Western
Force along with draws against the Bulls and Cheetahs
as the Chiefs saw their season begin to disintegrate.
although back on the winning side of the ledger with a six-try victory
it was not a complete performance from the Chiefs who enjoyed a golden
period in the lead up to half time but otherwise struggled to breach the
But it was the fact they had rediscovered their
winning formula rather than the manner in which they produced it that
most impressed Chiefs captain Liam Messam.
"I'm proud of the way
the boys bounced back. We had our backs against the wall and they came
out here and performed. It's probably not the flashiest performance but
it's a win," he said.
It was the Lions who led 3-0 after the
opening 20 minutes, before the Chiefs received an injection of
confidence with their opening try by Gareth Anscombe.
After a try
by new hooker Nathan Harris was disallowed because of an off-the-ball
obstruction the Chiefs closed out the half with tries to Tanerau Latimer
and Charlie Ngatai in quick succession.
Prop Pauliasi Manu
produced the crucial fourth try immediately after the resumption when he
bullocked his way through the Lions defence from close range.
the bonus point in the bag the Chiefs went off the boil allowing the
Lions to strike back immediately with a try to Courtnall Skosan.
was to be another 30 before the Chiefs were able to score again with
Bundee Aki and Tim Nanai-Williams both crossing in the closing minutes.
win put the Chiefs back on top of the New Zealand conference with five
wins from 10 matches while the Lions are third in the South African
conference with four wins from 10.
Tries: Gareth Anscombe, Tanerau Latimer, Charlie Ngatai, Pauliasi Manu, Bundee Aki, Tim Nanai-Williams Conversions: Anscombe (3), Andrew Horrell
Try: Courtnall Skosan
Penalty: Elton Jantjies
15 Tim Nanai-Williams, 14 Dwayne Sweeney, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Tom Marshall, 11 James Lowe, 10 Gareth Anscombe, 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8 Liam Messam (captain), 7 Sam Cane, 6 Tanerau Latimer, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Ross Filipo, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Pauliasi Manu
Substitutes: 16 Mahonri Schwalger, 17 Jamie Mackintosh, 18 Ben Tameifuna, 19 Matt Symons, 20 Michael Fitzgerald, 21 Brad Weber, 22 Bundee Aki, 23 Andrew Horrell
15. Chrysander Botha, 14. Deon van Rensburg, 13. Lionel Mapoe, 12. Stefan Watermeyer, 11. Courtnall Skosan, 10. Elton Jantjies, 9. Faf de Klerk, 8. Warren Whiteley (captain), 7. Derick Minnie, 6. Jaco Kriel, 5. Franco Mostert, 4. Martin Muller, 3. Julian Redelinghuys, 2. Robbie Coetzee, 1. Schalk van der Merwe
Substitutes: 16. Armand van der Merwe, 17. Jacques van Rooyen, 18. Ruan Dreyer, 19. MB Lusaseni , 20. Willie Britz, 21. Ross Cronjé, 22. Marnitz Boshoff, 23. JW Jonker