Chiefs too good for Force

2012-04-06 15:26

Perth - The unpredictable Chiefs held the Force at bay to win their Super Rugby showdown 20-12 here on Friday.

One try in each half was enough for the Chiefs to overcome their own careless play at times and continue their impressive start to the season.

It was the Chiefs' first win in Australia since 2010.

"It was tough to get points, we opened them up a couple of times, they scrambled really well," said Chiefs captain Craig Clarke.

"We turned it over a few times, but it was a good grinding win."

Force skipper David Pocock said the Chiefs made better use of their few opportunities.

"They turned defence into attack very well," he said. "They defended very well and we coughed up too much ball and were a bit one-dimensional."

The Force ran in five tries a week earlier against the Reds, but weren't able to capitalise on the numerous turnovers (16) and penalties (13) conceded by the misfiring Chiefs and rarely threatened the try-line, with David Harvey scoring all the home team's points through penalties.

The Chiefs led by just one at the break, 7-6, courtesy of Lelia Masaga's 16th-minute try, when he weaved through the Force defence to score next to the posts, Aaron Cruden providing the simple conversion.

What proved to be the decisive play of the match came in the 48th minute, when former rugby league star Sonny Bill Williams attracted a host of Force defensive attention and lobbed an audacious pass out of the heavy traffic to his cousin, Tim Nanai-Williams, who strolled in for an easy try that Cruden again converted.

The Chiefs led 14-6 and although the Force were within one try of victory at 17-12 late in the match, a Cruden penalty in the 69th minute put the match beyond the home team's reach.


Force: Penalties: David Harvey (4)

Chiefs: Tries: Leila Masaga, Tim Nanai-Williams; Conversions: Aaron Cruden (2); Penalties: Cruden (2)


15 David Harvey, 14 Samu Wara, 13 Nick Cummins, 12 Winston Stanley, 11 Alfie Mafi, 10 Ben Seymour, 9 Brett Sheehan, 8 Matt Hodgson, 7 David Pocock (captain), 6 Richard Brown, 5 Nathan Sharpe, 4 Toby Lynn, 3 Salesi Ma'afu, 2 Nathan Charles, 1 Pek Cowan

Substitutes: 16 Elvis Taione, 17 Kieran Longbottom, 18 Phoenix Battye, 19 Ben McCalman, 20 Josh Holmes, 21 Rory Sidey, 22 Patrick Dellit

15. Robbie Robinson, 14. Lelia Masaga, 13. Richard Kahui, 12. Sonny Bill Williams, 11. Tim Nanai-Williams, 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. Mahonri Schwalger, 1. Sona Taumalolo

Substitutes: 16. Hikawera Elliott, 17. Josh Hohneck, 18. Michael Fitzgerald, 19. Sam Cane, 20. Augustine Pulu, 21. Andrew Horrell, 22. Jackson Willison