TJ Perenara of the Hurricanes charges forward (Getty).
The Hurricanes were too strong for the Chiefs in a Super Rugby Aotearoa clash on Saturday, cruising to a 31-17 bonus point victory in Wellington.
AS IT HAPPENED: Hurricanes 31-18 Chiefs
It brings the curtain down on a dismal tournament for Warren Gatland’s Chiefs, who finish the campaign having lost all eight of their matches.
The Hurricanes, who have one match left next weekend against the Highlanders, are now third on the log just three points behind the table-topping Crusaders and in with a mathematical chance of winning the tournament.
The Crusaders, though, will be crowned champions if they beat the Highlanders on Sunday.
The match was tightly contested for large periods, but the difference in quality was seen in converting pressure into points with the hosts running in five tries to just two from their visitors having taken a 12-3 lead into half-time.
More to follow …
Hurricanes 31 (12)
Tries: Peter Umaga-Jensen (2), Dane Coles, Kobus van Wyk, Billy Proctor
Conversions: Jordie Barrett (3)
Chiefs 18 (3)
Tries: Sean Wainui, Mitch Karpik
Conversion: Damian McKenzie
Penalties: McKenzie (2)
15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Peter Umaga-Jensen, 12 Vince Aso, 11 Wes Goosen, 10 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 9 TJ Perenara (co-captain), 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Du’Plessis Kirifi, 6 Reed Prinsep, 5 Scott Scrafton, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Dane Coles (co-captain), 1 Ben May
Substitutes: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 Tevita Mafileo, 18 Pouri Rakete-Stones, 19 Kane Le’aupepe, 20 Devan Flanders, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Billy Proctor, 23 Jonah Lowe
15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Shaun Stevenson, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Alex Nankivell, 11 Sean Wainui, 10 Kaleb Trask, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Pita Gus Sowakula, 7 Sam Cane (captain), 6 Luke Jacobson, 5 Mitchell Brown, 4 Naitoa Ah Kuoi, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 1 Ollie Norris
Substitutes: 16 Bradley Slater, 17 Rob Cobb, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Mitchell Karpik, 21 Lisati Milo-Harris, 22 Quinn Tupaea, 23 Kini Naholo