Watch: Rampaging Julian Savea makes perfect read for soaring intercept, races away to score in opening minute

The Hurricanes have bounced back into life with 32-31 win over the Chiefs to book a Super Rugby semi-final berth.

An error-riddled but entertaining quarter-final in Wellington tonight was decided when the home side took control through the middle stages of the second half.

They scored 15 unanswered points, which included a second try to TJ Perenara.

The powerful All Blacks No.9 scored both tries straight off the back of scrums, taking him to 48 in his Super Rugby career.

It means the Hurricanes will contest a semi-final for the fourth successive year, against either the Crusaders or the Sharks.

The Chiefs, who had won 28-24 when the teams met in the final round of the regular season, farewell stalwarts Liam Messam and Charlie Ngatai, who have signed French club contracts.

The visitors were below their best, paying for fundamental mistakes in blustery conditions.

In contrast, it was a from the Hurricanes, who won 10 straight games through the regular season before losing four of their previous five.

Their defence went to another level, led by midfield backs Ngani Laumape and Jordie Barrett.

Prop Jeff Toomaga-Allen also led a strong scrum display in his 100th Hurricanes appearance.

The game began in extraordinary fashion with two long runs from Hurricanes wing Julian Savea courtesy of intercepts.

He scored from the first after 45 seconds and was dragged down short in the second.
The Chiefs responded through a well-worked try to halfback Brad Weber but the home side took a 17-10 lead into halftime when Perenara stretched out.

Anton Lienert-Brown levelled the scores again before the Hurricanes pack took command, creating tries for Perenara and Ben Lam.

Powerhouse winger Lam shrugged aside Damian McKenzie to score in the left corner, giving him 15 tries for the season and lifting him level with NSW Waratahs wing Taqele Naiyaravoro atop the competition list.

McKenzie and flanker Lachlan Boshier crossed for converted Chiefs tries in the final two minutes but they never threatened to overhaul the 15-point margin.


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As it happened: Chiefs' late surge not enough as tactical Hurricanes hold on for one-point win in windy Wellington

Relive 1 NEWS NOW's live updates of tonight's Super Rugby quarter-final between the Hurricanes and Chiefs at Westpac Stadium in Wellington.

FT: HUR 32-31 CHI

CHI TRY! Fifita gets a yellow card on fulltime for a scuffle he started but it doesn't matter. Chiefs get territory from the penalty and score a heart-breaking consolation try on the full-time hooter through Boshier. Nice touch from the Chiefs. Ngatai takes the final conversion in his last game and he slots it.

Hurricanes played a tactical game on a windy night tonight. The Chiefs just couldn't break the line when they needed to early in the game and in the second half they couldn't play in the right half of the field until it was too late. That's going to do it for our coverage tonight. Po marie!

78min: HUR 32-24 CHI

CHI TRY! Chiefs finally find space on the left wing with Alaimalo. He links up with McKenzie with 20m to go and the first-five is in untouched. Nice end to the Chiefs season.

77min: HUR 32-17 CHI

Rinse and repeat. Chiefs try a line break with a risky pass. It goes to ground. Savea recovers it, sees space and kicks for a bounce into touch. Chiefs lineout on their 22m again.

75min: HUR 32-17 CHI

Chiefs are playing a desperate, loose style now but the Hurricanes line is holding. They just haven't been able to escape their half cleanly in this second half. Laumape delivers his third big hit of the night and it forces another turnover on halfway. Perenara sees space in the backfield and grubbers it through into touch. Chiefs lineout on their 22m.

72min: HUR 32-17 CHI

Chiefs make a break down the left wing with quick hands but it all goes to waste 10m from the Hurricanes line. Ball comes out to McKenzie and he moves it on to Polwart but the reserve drops it cold. That was probably there only chance of a miracle comeback, you feel.

70min: HUR 32-17 CHI

HUR TRY! Ben Lam scores No.15 for the season in the left corner and that may be the final nail. Simple move down the backline and Lam has space to work with to score. Bumps off a sweeping McKenzie and he's in. Jordie steps up this time for the conversion instead of his brother from the sideline and nails it.

67min: HUR 25-17 CHI

Hurricanes get the ball back and work the ball deep into the Chiefs' half with 15 phases of play. The ball comes out to the right wing 15m from the Chiefs' line and there's a knock on by the Chiefs in the tackle. No advantage so we're coming back for a Hurricanes scrum. 15m from the line. THis could decide the game.

65min: HUR 25-17 CHI

Chiefs have a chance to reply after the Hurricanes are penalised for hands in the ruck shortly after kickoff. McKenzie finds touch 40m from the Hurricanes' line.

63min: HUR 25-17 CHI

CHI TRY! Perenara scores off the back of the scrum again. Busts through Weber and powers over despite Cane arriving to shut him down.

61min: HUR 20-17 CHI

Hurricanes break into the Chiefs' 22m after a linebreak by Jordie before firing it out wide to Savea. Savea is brought down 15m short and the Hurricanes turn to their forwards. It takes eight phases but they get to within 5m. The ball comes out to Jordie on the right, he goes for the line and gets held up. Hurricanes scrum 5m out.

58min: HUR 20-17 CHI

Long passage of play as both sides spend time working on 10+phase attacks in the middle of the field. McKenzie sees the Chiefs going no where and kicks one through but he's overcooked it. Bounces into the Hurricanes' in-goal and Jordie arrives to to kill it. Hurricanes with a 22m dropout coming up.

54min: HUR 20-17 CHI

HUR THREE! Chiefs are penalised early after kickoff for hands in the ruck and Beauden steps up from 42m out as this game goes more on the line. He's about 10m in from the sideline for the kick. Keeps the kick low and slots a curling stunner. Hurricanes jump back in front.

51min: HUR 17-17 CHI

CHI TRY! Ngatai hoofs a clearing kick but it doesn't go out thanks to that classic Welly breeze. The bounce though is perfect for a chasing Boshier and he takes it on halfway. He chugs down into the 22m and gets brought down 10m short. It's quickly recycled to the left and Lienert-Brown scores. All tied up again.

48min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Hurricanes rumble for 14 phases but can't crack the line and it leads to a knock on. Good defence from the Chiefs there. Direct and composed. Stoppage in play for Milner-Skudder he gets a nice cut on the head patched up. Play gets back underway with a Chiefs scrum just inside their 22m.

45min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Savea gets space down the right wing but his grubber goes into touch 10m from the Chiefs line. Chiefs respond through McKenzie off the lineout with a clearance. Kick is wobbly though and only finds his 22m. Hurricanes with another lineout coming up.

43min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Hurricanes forwards get the job done as their maul earns a penalty. Chiefs tried to stop the roll but collapse it and get penalised. Beauden finds touch on halfway for a lineout.

42min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Messam makes a clean turnover on his 10m line and the Hurricanes are out of position. Alaimalo immediately thumps it down to the empty backfield and bounces it into touch. Hurricanes under pressure early with a lineout just outside their 22m.

40min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Beauden gets us going again. Someone's season will be over in 40 minutes.

HT: HUR 17-10 CHI

Chiefs had one last chance to score as Messam rumbles into the Hurricanes' 22m and more with a breat run but he pushes for an offload and loses the ball. Hurricanes recover and kick it into touch. Entertaining first half but both sides having issues with the wind kicking wise and even some odd handling errors. Hurricanes have got the lead despite having less ball. Chiefs haven't quite cracked the code for breaking the line this week. Laumape and the Bus are having big nights at home too. We'll be back soon for another thrilling 40 minutes.

38min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Chiefs look to build up another patient attack after a shocking box kick by Perenara makes little ground. But there's a wild pass that skittles to half way and Milner-Skudder is there to scoop it up. But he hasn't got it clean and it's a knock on. Chiefs scrum on halfway.

35min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Beauden goes to a crosskick but Alaimalo takes it and calls mark. Free kick for the Chiefs. Odd choice by Barrett No.10 there.

34min: HUR 17-10 CHI

Laumape with another big hit after the kickoff and it leads to a penalty for not releasing. Beauden kicks for touch on halfway and finds it. Hurricanes with a lineout just inside the Chiefs' 22m.

33min: HUR 17-10 CHI

HUR TRY! Perenara bolts off the back of the scrum and he squeezes through two tacklers to score to the left. The TMO was called in to check if there was a knock on as he went for the line but no angles can prove it so he gets benefit of the doubt. Canes back out in front.

31min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Ball comes out to Ngatai in the midfield but he's stopped in his tracks by Laumape. Laumape holds him up and a maul forms. It goes to ground and the ball isn't coming out so the ref rewards the Hurricanes with a scrum. Massive play from Laumape.

30min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Beauden looks to score near the left wing but he loses the ball in contact. Chiefs scrum on their 5m. Could be another costly decision and error.

28min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Chiefs clear but Hurricanes pin them down again with a bouncing kick into the Chiefs' 22m. McKenzie recovers and looks to run but he's got no support as he's taken to ground. Penalty comes for not releasing and the Hurricanes back themselves this time. Three points on offer with the mark inside the Chiefs' 22m but Beauden kicks for touch. Hurricanes lineout 5m from the line.

27min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Hurricanes make a break down the left wing as Lam frees up Milner-Skudder with an offload. He pops one over the top to chase but a rough bounce flings the ball into touch. Chiefs lineout 15m from their own line.

25min: HUR 10-10 CHI

The wind is really playing up in the Cake Tin as Harris is penalised again for a non-straight throw. Hurricanes scrum just outside their 22m.

24min: HUR 10-10 CHI

Chiefs patient attack pays off as they hold onto the ball for 10 phases before McKenzie spies space out the back. He grubbers it through and Beauden is there at the back to recover it but three Chiefs meet him near the sideline and the bundle him into touch. Chiefs lineout on the Hurricanes' 22m.

22min: HUR 10-10 CHI

CHI THREE! Chiefs throw everything at the Hurricanes line but it holds for 12 phases. However they're found offside and there's no advantage so it comes back for a penalty. Chiefs take the points this time and McKenzie delivers. All tied up.

19min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Chiefs with another big attacking chance. Hurricanes are penalised for hands in the ruck and the Chiefs have again turned down the three for a kick into touch. McKenzie finds it with ease and it'll be 5m from the Hurricanes' line.

16min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Evans makes a clean turnover on halfway and the Hurricanes counter-attack through Jordie. He grubbers it through the unsettled Chiefs line but it's too heavy for Lam to chase and bounces into touch inside the Chiefs' 22m.

14min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Chiefs kicking themselves after turning down three points and throwing away their penalty. They earn it 40m out after a tackler doesn't release and McKenzie finds touch 10m from the Hurricane's line but Harris' throw isn't straight so it's a Hurricanes scrum. Decisions like that can be all the difference in playoff footy.

12min: HUR 10-7 CHI

Chiefs work a turnover through Cane after kickoff but it goes to waste with a knock on moments later. Hurricanes 10m off their own line.

11min: HUR 10-7 CHI

HUR THREE! Sure enough, Hurricanes come away with points as the Chiefs are penalised for being offside two phases after the scrum. Barrett takes the easy points on offer right in front.

9min: HUR 7-7 CHI

Hurricanes turn for an immediate response as Messam knocks it on after the kickoff. That's given the Hurricanes a scrum 15m from the Chiefs' line on right side of the field.

8min: HUR 7-7 CHI

CHI TRY! Chiefs respond through Weber. Hurricanes line comes up too quick on halfway looking for another intercept and Harris is in space on the left wing. He links up with Stevenson who draws and passes to his halfback on the Hurricanes' 22m to set up the try. Doozy of a start in Wellywood.

5min: HUR 7-0 CHI

Chiefs with an immediate chance to strike back after the Hurricanes knock it on after the kickoff so it's a Chiefs scrum inside the Hurricanes' 22m. The scrum goes down, ball goes left and Savea has another intercept. He's looking to score again but Lienert-Brown gets to him and there's a knock-on as Savea looks to offload inside the Chiefs' 22m. The Bus is off to a roaring start. 

2min: HUR 7-0 CHI

HUR TRY! THE BUS IS IN UNDER THE POSTS! Chiefs get the ball on halfway after Perenara clears. McKenzie's first pass of the night is a huge skip pass and Savea has picked it. Runs 50m untouched to score. What a start for the home side after last week.

KICKOFF

McKenzie kicks things off and we're underway in Welly!

PRE-GAME

Brad Shields has passed his fitness test so he will start at blindside for the Hurricanes and captain them tonight. That means Reed Prinsep will head to the bench and Sam Henwood gets the night off. Wes Goosen has also passed a head check to sit on the bench. Strong north-western breeze in the Cake Tin at the moment.

Chiefs flanker Mitchell Karpik is tackled by Hurricanes winger Ben Lam during the Super 15 Rugby match - Chiefs v Hurricanes played at FMG Stadium Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand on Friday 13 July 2018.

Copyright photo: © Bruce Lim / www.photosport.nz
Chiefs flanker Mitchell Karpik is tackled by Hurricanes winger Ben Lam. Source: Photosport

PREVIEW

It's been less than a week since they last met but the landscape of tonight's contest is completely different for the Hurricanes and Chiefs.

There's the integration of rested All Blacks, a different venue and the win-or-go-home mentality all thrown into the mix this week after the Chiefs drew first blood in Hamilton last Saturday.

Firstly, the All Blacks.

The Chiefs have welcomed back Sam Cane, Karl Tu’inukuafe and Nathan Harris for the contest while the Hurricanes have recalled Julian Savea to the starting squad and shuffled their backline around to accommodate him.

Savea will be on the right wing with Ben Lam on the left as Nehe Milner-Skudder moves to fullback, meaning Jordie Barrett once again makes the bold move into the midfield.

The venue could be a big factor as well.

The Hurricanes have won 21 of their last 22 games in Wellington despite the poor form they're currently in, having lost four of their last five games - that one win was against the Blues in the Cake Tin.

With everything on the line, the teams aren't taking anything for granted tonight.

"It’s do or die at this point in the season," Chiefs coach Colin Cooper said.

"The winner takes all and we’ve talked about the importance of giving the best you can and your all for the jersey."

TEAMS

Hurricanes: 15 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 14 Julian Savea, 13 Jordie Barrett, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Gareth Evans, 6 Brad Shields (c)/Reed Prinsep, 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Michael Fatialofa, 3 Jeff Toomaga-Allen, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Toby Smith

Replacements: 16 James O’Reilly, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Ben May, 19 Vaea Fifita, 20 Reed Prinsep/Sam Henwood, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Ihaia West, 23 Wes Goosen/Jonah Lowe

Chiefs: 15 Solomon Alaimalo, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Charlie Ngatai, 11 Shaun Stevenson, 10 Damian McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Liam Messam, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Lachlan Boshier, 5 Michael Allardice, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Angus Ta’avao, 2 Nathan Harris, 1 Karl Tu’inukuafe

Replacements: 16 Liam Polwart, 17 Sam Prattley, 18 Jeff Thwaites, 19 Jesse Parete, 20 Mitch Karpik, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Marty McKenzie, 23 Alex Nankivell


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Exclusive: Kiwi Sevens legend Sir Gordon Tietjens reveals he'll retire after Tokyo Olympics – 'That would be my swansong'

Sir Gordon Tietjens has confirmed he's in the last stages of his sevens coaching career.

The legendary Kiwi coach will guide Samoa in what will be his last World Cup in charge of a side and admits he isn’t looking much further.

Sir Gordon told 1 NEWS he will definitely end his association with the sport after the 2020 Olympics.

"That would be my last swansong, that's for sure," he said.

"But it's a great game, it's been good to me over the years."

Sir Gordon joined the Pacific side after the greatest sevens tenure in history with New Zealand where he guided them to 12 World Series titles and four Commonwealth Games gold medals.

While results on the field with Samoa haven't been the same Sir Gordon has still managed significant strides, including getting players contracted.

"Contracting the players has been a real positive in the sense that we retain the players, we just won't lose them overnight, which has happened in the past," he said.

One of those players, Neria Fomai, says he’s benefited from working with Kiwi coach.

"It's been good, especially for us islander boys, we sort of take shortcuts at times, but he makes sure none of us do that at training."

Sir Gordon’s squad got one last intense training in in California today before their World Cup campaign kicks off in San Francisco tomorrow.

They begin with a knockout game at 9:30am NZT against Uganda in the round of 32.

Tietjen’s said the game has been good to him, but he knows it’s time to let go. Source: 1 NEWS


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