Super Rugby wrap: Brumbies and Chiefs secure wins
By Sky Sports Rugby Union
Last Updated: 01/06/19 6:18pm
A recap of Saturday's Super Rugby games in Round 16 as the Chiefs secured a comeback win, the Brumbies triumphed in Japan while the Hurricanes saw off the Sharks and the Jaguares beat the Reds.
Sunwolves 19-42 Brumbies
The Brumbies all but secured a play-off place and moved closer to sealing first place in the Australian conference with a 42-19 bonus-point win over the Sunwolves.
However, the win over last-placed Wolves came much harder than the Brumbies might have expected or the scoreline indicated.
The Japanese side scored the first try of the match through Hosea Saumaki within a minute of the kick-off and were still in the game at half-time when they trailed 21-12, with Semisi Masirewa having crossed with a brilliant individual effort.
Then when the Brumbies scored early in the second half, they immediately replied through Jamie Booth to make the score 28-19.
But the Brumbies pulled away with a second-half hat trick to replacement hooker Connal McInerney, all from rolling mauls.
McInerney scored in the 48th, 58th and 70th minutes to give the Brumbies their fourth straight win. Pete Samu, Irae Simone and Tom Banks also scored tries for the Brumbies.
Chiefs 40-27 Crusaders
The Chiefs rallied from 20-0 down after 20 minutes to beat the Crusaders 40-27 in Fiji, which just about keeps alive their play-off hopes.
The Crusaders made a quick start, scoring tries through Scott Barrett, Mitchell Drummond and Fiji-born Sevu Reece to open a 20-point advantage.
But the match turned from the half-hour point as the Chiefs scored three tries in nine minutes through Solomon Alaimalu, Samisoni Taukei'aho and Jesse Parete to make it 20-19 after a six-try first half.
The Crusaders scored through winger Braydon Ennor to expand their lead to 27-19 after the restart, but the hosts hit back again with a try from livewire scrum-half Brad Weber to restore a one-point lead.
The Waikato-based side finally hit the front in the 66th minute when winger Shaun Stevenson broke the line and touched down under the posts, followed by Jack Debreczeni's conversion.
Replacement Tumua Manu then pounced on a short 22 restart in the 78th minute to score the try which sealed the win and denied the Crusaders a bonus point.
The Crusaders have begun to stagger in the late stages of the season, drawing two and losing one of their last four games. They still need two points to clinch first place and home advantage.
The Chiefs have only a faint chance of reaching the top eight with one match remaining against the Rebels.
Sharks 17-30 Hurricanes
The Hurricanes outscored their hosts by three tries to two at King's Park on Saturday to keep on course for the playoffs while the Sharks' hopes suffered a severe blow.
Jordie Barrett and Ngani Laumape scored tries as the Kiwi visitors went 20-3 ahead just past the half hour mark, but the Sharks clawed it back to 20-10 at the break after Aphelele Fassi dotted down for the home side.
The Sharks then cut the lead to just three points soon after the break with a Juan Schoeman score but allowed the Hurricanes to re-establish control in the last 20 minutes.
Wes Goosen's try and the boot of Beauden Barrett ensured the Hurricanes returned to winning ways after losing at home to the Jaguares in their last outing.
Reds 23-34 Jaguares
The Jaguares rounded out their Australasian tour with a third straight victory to return home for their last two matches of the regular season with a strong chance of winning the South African conference title.
Winger Santiago Carreras and scrum-half Felipe Ezcurra crossed in the first half and replacement forwards Julian Montoya and Marcos Kremer after the break to set the Argentines on their way to victory on Saturday.
Carreras showed some fine footballing skills to score his maiden Super Rugby try in the 24th minute and grabbed a second on the intercept with seconds remaining in the match to secure what could be a vital bonus point.
With home matches against the Sharks and cellar-dwelling Sunwolves to come, the Jaguares are seven points clear of the Bulls at the top of their conference.
Lions 41-22 Stormers
Kwagga Smith scored two tries and Andries Coetzee, Courtnall Skosan, Aphiwe Dyantyi and Hacjivah Dayimani all also went over as the Lions moved into a playoff place with a much-needed bonus-point home win at Ellis Park on Saturday.
Johan du Toit, Herschel Jantjies and Joshua Stander replied for the visitors from Cape Town, whose own play-off hopes are now in peril.
The Lions, who dropped Springbok pivot Elton Jantjies for disciplinary reasons, had a narrow 13-10 lead at half-time but two quick tries after the break effectively broke the Stormers' resistance.
It was the first win in five attempts this season for the Lions over fellow South African opposition.