Super Rugby: Chiefs grab bonus-point win over Southern Kings
The Chiefs maintained their grip on Super Rugby's New Zealand Conference after a 35-24 victory over Southern Kings.
Last Updated: 15/03/13 7:24pm
Lelia Masaga grabbed a hat-trick of tries and Sam Cane also crossed the try-line during the cross-conference contest at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
Sergeal Petersen and Jacques Engelbrecht ran in tries for the hosts but the Port Elizabeth-based side were comfortably beaten in the end.
The visitors edged 6-3 ahead in the early stages as Gareth Anscombe sent over two penalties either side of a three-pointer from the Kings' Demetri Catrakilis.
The Chiefs continued to press and scored the opening try in the 20th minute as Aaron Cruden spun a pass out wide for Masaga to score on the overlap and Anscombe nailed the touchline conversion.
The Kings hit back as Catrakilis slotted over his second penalty but they were then caught napping by a counter attack, which ended with Masaga trotting over in the corner for his second try.
Another score seemed imminent as the Chiefs piled on the pressure, but a handling error from Masaga allowed Kings winger Sergeal Petersen to race away for a length-of-the-field score, making it 18-13 to the visitors at half-time.
The Chiefs were back on the front foot in the second half, however, and Cane powered over from close range to give his side some more breathing space, with Anscombe adding the extras.
Shortly after, Masaga broke free down the right and dived in at the corner for his third try of the evening, before the Chiefs' numbers were reduced as replacement Augustine Pulu was sin-binned for a professional foul on the try-line.
Jacques Engelbrecht crossed for a try shortly afterwards but the comeback never materialised, with the only further scores being two penalites from Catrakilis and one from Anscombe.