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Super Rugby: Chiefs hand Blues a third straight Super Rugby loss
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Gareth Anscombe kicked 13 points against his former club to help the Chiefs record a 23-16 victory over the Blues at Bay Park.
Richard Kahui and Ben Tameifuna both crossed for tries as the Chiefs won the derby battle for the fourth year in succession to extend their lead at the top of the New Zealand conference.
The struggling Blues could at least console themselves with a losing bonus point thanks to a late try from George Moala at the end of a physical battle.
They had trailed 9-6 at half time although only due to the fact the Chiefs had failed to make the most of a host of opportunities.
Anscombe saw a try chalked off for an infringement at the breakdown shortly after seeing team-mate Bundee Aki sin-binned for a tip-tackle on Auckland's Rene Ranger.
Lelia Masaga then failed to hang on for the Chiefs just inches from the line, while Aaron Cruden was called back for obstruction after excellent work by the impressive Kahui.
It meant that all the points in the opening half came off the kicking tee, Anscombe landing three penalties with Chris Noakes replying with a pair for the Blues.
Finally the Chiefs managed to legally get over the try-line when Tameifuna muscled his way over from close range, Anscombe's conversion making it 16-6.
Noakes replied for the Blues with three points but that was negated shortly after when Kahui charged down a Francis Saili clearing kick before re-taking the ball and scoring under the posts.
The defending champions by then knew they were set to suffer a third straight defeat, though they at least continued fighting through to the end to pick up something for their efforts through winger Moala's converted score.Super 15. Click here to bet.