21 March 2009

Sivivatu show sinks Blues

Four tries to Chiefs wing Sitiveni Sivivatu has helped his side demolish the Blues 63-34 at Waikato Stadium in Hamilton.

The All Black winger was on fire, picking up a hat-trick in the first half and another in the second as the Chiefs notched their most commanding victory of the season.

With a full-strength team, the Chiefs were unstoppable and ran in nine tries to the Blues five in an action packed week six Rebel Sport Super 14 encounter.

The home side opened up the points scoring for the night when Sitiveni Sivivatu got fed an outside ball and slid over in the far corner, allowing first five-eighths Stephen Donald to add the extras to take an early seven point lead.

After a stolen lineout the blues hit back straight away when lock Ali Williams burst down the sideline before flicking an inside ball to fullback Isaia Toeava who scored.

Sivivatu was able to score his second of the night in the 13th minute when he stepped his way through the Blues backline to notch his 33th super rugby try, a new Chiefs record for the most tries scored for the franchise.

All Blacks centre Richard Kahui made the most of the mounting pressure and recovered a handy little grubber kick to score the Chiefs third of the night and boost the score out to a 21-8 with only a quarter of the game gone.

The Chiefs were also looking good in their set-pieces, particularly in the lineouts that have been a real Achilles heel of the side and not only secured their own ball but managed to steal some ball in the process.

With the set-piece looking solid, the Chiefs backline was able to show just how dangerous it was and allowed Sivivatu to again get around the outside and cause some carnage.

The 26-year-old All Black wing soon grabbed his third of the night when he stepped inside the covering tackle of Joe Rokocoko and crashed over the line. Donald's boot added the extras and put the Chiefs in a commanding position after already securing a bonus point.

Chiefs halfback Brendon Leonard soon caught the Blues forwards napping, who were probably wondering how so many tries were being scored against them, and found a gap near the sideline allowing him to sprint unhanded to score the fifth try for his side.

The visitors were able to add some respectability on the stroke of halftime when Toeava found his way through some average Chiefs defence and score his second. Jimmy Gopperth's kick was true from the sideline, taking the score at halftime to 35-15.

Things looked to have calmed down a bit early in the second half before Donald set up a beautiful move that saw speedy wing Lelia Masaga score his first of the night and add to the Chiefs already mammoth score.

The Blues weren't letting things get away from them however and hit back immediately when centre Anthony Tuitavake made the most of an overlap and strolled through. Gopperth kicked another conversion and took the score to 42-20.

Two quick and well-deserved tries to the Chiefs soon followed when blindside flanker Liam Messam showed some gas to pierce a gap and score before second five-eighths Callum Bruce got passed an outside ball and added his name to the point-scorers list.

With the score sitting at 56-20 with 20 minutes still to play, the Chiefs were sending out a loud and clear message that when all their players are healthy and playing they are a side that has the ability to absolutely punish quality teams.

The Blues were pushing back however and threatened the Chiefs line for a long time before replacement Jamie Helleur scored in the corner.

Sivivatu scored his fourth try of the evening before a last-minute try to Rokocoko, his second, ended the game with the final score 63-34.

Chiefs 63 (Sivivatu 4, Leonard, Messam, Kahui, Bruce, Masaga)

Blues 34 (Rokocoko 2, Tuitavake, Toeava, Helleur)

HT: 35-15

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