Wellington - Hooker Dane Coles scored a
controversial try more than four minutes after the final hooter had
sounded to give the Hurricanes a 28-25 victory over the Chiefs on Friday to keep their slim Super Rugby playoffs hopes
Coles had appeared to be have fallen short and then made a
double movement to get the ball over the line in the 85th minute, but
television official Mike Fraser ruled he had scored the try.
Flyhalf Beauden Barrett then converted to give the home side their slim
victory and ensured they stayed in the hunt for the playoffs, moving to
57 points on the table, though they need other results to go their way
to make the top six.
The Chiefs (64) had already secured top spot in the New Zealand conference and at least second overall for the playoffs.
The home side were placed under early pressure from the Chiefs, leaking
a try to scrumhalf Tawera Kerr-Barlow that was converted by Aaron
Cruden, but then had the better of the next 25 minutes with winger
Julian Savea scoring two tries, both times finishing off superb build
ups by the entire team.
Tighthead prop Ben May, however, was then
given a yellow card by referee Jonathan Kaplan for a dangerous tackle
on Sonny Bill Williams, and the Chiefs used the extra-man advantage to
level the score with a Cruden penalty and Ben Tameifuna try.
Barrett, who had earlier missed two penalties and a conversion, gave the
home side an 18-15 half time lead when he slotted a penalty after the
hooter had sounded.
The Chiefs increased the pressure in the
second half, virtually camping down in Hurricanes territory, with the
home side's only real attack inside the first 20 minutes after the break
leading to Cruden's try when he intercepted a Barrett pass intended for
Cruden's try forced the Hurricanes to chase the game,
making numerous mistakes as they tried to force the play rather than be
as composed as they were in the first half, while the Chiefs slowed the
The Hurricanes, however, somehow managed to get down
field in the final minutes and recycle the ball continuously before
Coles scored the match winner to bring the 23 549-strong crowd to their
15 Andre Taylor, 15 Cory
Jane/Alapati Leiua, 13 Conrad Smith (captain), 12 Tim Bateman, 11 Julian
Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Chris Eaton/Frae Wilson, 8 Victor Vito, 7
Jack Lam, 6 Faifili Levave, 5 Jason Eaton, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Ben May, 2
Dane Coles, 1 Reggie Goodes
Substitutes: 16 Motu Matu’u, 17
Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 18 James Broadhurst, 19 Brad Shields, 20
FraeWilson/Jamie Nutbrown, 21 Tusi Pisi, 22 Jayden Hayward Chiefs:
Andrew Horrel, 14 Lelia Masaga, 13 Jackson Willison, 12 Sonny Bill
Williams, 11 Robbie Robinson, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 8
Kane Thompson, 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Liam Messam, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4
Craig Clarke (captain), 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Toby Smith
16 Mahonri Schwalger, 17 Sona Taumalolo, 18 Michael Fitzgerald, 19 Sam
Cane, 20 Brendon Leonard, 21 Asaeli Tikoirotuma, 22 Tim Nanai-Williams