Vodafone Super Rugby wrap: Round 8 results

Super Rugby
by AFP

Beauden Barrett produced a masterclass performance, albeit with another yellow card, to get the Hurricanes home 28-24 against the Blues in their Super Rugby clash in Auckland on Saturday. 

Barrett was instrumental in three of the four Hurricanes tries in the fast but scrappy encounter where missed tackles and turnovers were rife.

The Blues, who have not beaten a New Zealand side at home since they downed the Highlanders in the first round of 2016, hit the front for the first time against the Hurricanes with 15 minutes remaining. 

But despite their desire to arrest their dismal home record they could not stop Barrett engineering a late match-winning try. 

The Blues were pressing the Hurricanes line looking to extend their lead when Barrett chipped ahead and regathered to spark a move that swept the length of the field.

It ended with the flyhalf angling a kick towards the corner where lock Mark Abbott, who scored the first try, was on hand to score the decider. 

"It took a pretty special play from Beauden to get them down their end," Blues captain James Parsons said. 

"That was the big play that we were looking for to win, and they won it unfortunately."

In Bloemfontein, the Chiefs produced a stunning comeback to overcame a 24-point deficit and beat the Cheetahs 41-27 on Saturday. 

Trailing 24-0 after 22 minutes, the visitors responded with a six-try scoring spree to claim a bonus-point round 8 victory at Free State Stadium in Bloemfontein.

Even a second-half yellow card for prop Kane Hames did not upset the visitors, who outscored the hosts by eight points to three while he was in the sin-bin.

Winning enabled two-time Super Rugby champions Chiefs to climb one place to second in the New Zealand conference, two points behind Canterbury Crusaders.

Cheetahs remained second in the Africa l conference, 17 points adrift of Western Stormers, who host Golden Lions in a South African derby later on Saturday. 

"The Cheetahs played some fantastic rugby in the early stages," said SuperSport analyst and former South Africa coach Nick Mallett.

"But a telling statistic is that in the final 58 minutes, the Chiefs scored 41 points and the Cheetahs just three.

In Cape Town, the Lions ended the perfect record this season of fellow South African side the Stormers with a bonus-point 29-16 triumph on Saturday.  

An inspired Johannesburg outfit scored four ties to one to earn a bonus point as they won at Newlands for the first time in Super Rugby.

The Stormers' loss after six victories leaves the Crusaders as the only team boasting a 100 percent record after they whipped the Sunwolves of Japan 50-3 for a seventh straight win.  

Billed as the major attraction of round 8, the Cape Town game lived up to expectations with the outcome in doubt until eight minutes from time when substitute winger Sylvian Mahuza scored.

In Pretoria, flyhalf Handre Pollard booted 16 points as the Bulls snapped a three-loss run by defeating Jaguares 26-13 on Saturday.   

The Springbok flyhalf converted tries by winger Trevor Ismaiel and lock Lood de Jager and slotted four penalties in a flawless goal-kicking performance.

Bulls led 13-3 at half-time in a scrappy round 8 match at Loftus Versfeld stadium that provided little entertainment for a small Easter holiday crowd.

The result was far more important for the hosts than the manner in which it was achieved after a humiliating loss to the lowly Sunwolves in Tokyo last weekend.

In Christchurch, Manasa Mataele bagged a hat-trick of tries to set the table-topping Crusaders up for a crushing 50-3 victory over the Sunwolves on Friday.

The overwhelming scoreline kept the Crusaders unbeaten after seven matches as they raced in eight tries to none to secure the important bonus point. 

The hapless Sunwolves have only tasted victory once this year to go with their sole win in their maiden season last year. 

Friday results

Christchurch - Crusaders 50 Sunwolves 3

Saturday results

Brisbane - Queensland Reds 47 Southern Kings 34
Auckland - Blues 24 Hurricanes 28
Melbourne -
Melbourne Rebels 9 ACT Brumbies 17
Bloemfontein -
Cheetahs 27 Chiefs 41

Cape Town - Stormers 16 Lions 29

Pretoria - Bulls 26 Jaguares 13
Byes: Western Force, NSW Waratahs, Highlanders, Sharks


By conference


Brumbies (7) 17

Reds (8) 10

Force (6) 9

Waratahs (7) 8

Rebels (6) 5
New Zealand

Crusaders (7)  31

Chiefs (7)  29

Hurricanes  (7)  28

Highlanders (7) 18

Blues (8) 17   

Africa 1

Stormers (7) 26

Bulls (7) 10

Cheetahs (7) 9

Sunwolves (7) 5

Africa 2

Lions (7) 28

Sharks (7) 22

Jaguares (7) 19

Kings (7) 6


Vodafone Super Rugby Round Nine

Friday April 21

Hurricanes v Brumbies

Waratahs v Kings

Lions v Jaguares 

Saturday April 22

Highlanders v Sunwolves

Crusaders v Stormers

Force v Chiefs

Bulls v Cheetahs

Sharks v Rebels

Byes: Blues, Reds