The Hurricanes recorded their first Super Rugby Aotearoa win with a 25-18 win over the Chiefs on Sunday.
The Hurricanes outscored the Chiefs three tries to two, with South African wing Kobus van Wyk bagging a brace at FMG Stadium Waikato in Hamilton.
The former Sharks player redeemed himself following his horrendous mistake against the Crusaders in Round 2.
The 23-year-old Jordie Barrett’s return was certainly a welcoming sight as the fullback put on a masterclass display both from the boot and with ball in hand, finishing the game with 10 points and two try assists to spare the blushes of teammate Scott Scrafton.
The lock put his team’s chances of victory in jeopardy late on in the contest after he was yellow-carded twice – resulting in the second card being a red – and conceded a penalty try in the last quarter of the match.
Hurricanes got off to a flying start as Barret slung a looping pass to Kobus van Wyk, who strolled in untouched on the right-wing. Barrett added the easy conversion for the 7-0 lead after six minutes of play.
The Chiefs finally got on the board after 17 minutes of play as Damian McKenzie slotted over a penalty.
After the first quarter of the match, there was certainly a lack of intensity ill-discipline proved to be a constant theme and the stop-start nature of the game restricting both side’s ability to unleash their full attacking potential.
With five minutes to go of the first half, the Hurricanes showed a glimpse of their attacking flair.
Barrett banged over another short-range penalty, before a Dane Coles intercept laid the foundations for a Du’Plessis Kirifi try.
Barrett added the extras for the 17-3 lead.
The fullback was in fine form from the tee, taking his team to a 20-3 lead with a mammoth 60-metre penalty kick right on the stroke of halftime.
The Chiefs were the first to score on the second half thanks to a McKenzie penalty.
Warren Gatland side’s continued to hammer the opposition defence inside the first 15 minutes of the second half, and with the numeral advantage after Scrafton’s yellow card it appears possible. However, Hurricanes defence were solid.
Instead, it was the Hurricanes who added another try to their tally a great line-break by Ardie Savea was followed by some precision passing which got Van Wyk over the line for his double.
Barrett failed to add the extras and the score remained 25-6 after 62 minutes.
The scoreline might have favoured the Hurricanes, however, their discipline is certainly a worrying sight as they were forced to continue with 14 men as Scrafton was handed his second yellow card. Consequently, Chiefs were rewarded with a penalty try narrowing the deficit to 12 points.
With less than a few minutes on the clock Chiefs were again on the attack and were rewarded for their efforts with a try from Lachlan Boshier.
But for the hosts, it was a little too late as the Hurricanes managed to hold on with a man down to clinch the victory.
Man of the match: The Chiefs have been struggling and the only standout performer in the side was fullback Damian McKenzie. Meanwhile for the Hurricanes Dane Coles and Thomas Perenara were instrumental for their side. However, our nod goes to Hurricanes fullback Jordie Barrett, who had a couple of try assists and his boot proved to be vital for the side.
Tries: Penalty try, Boshier
Pens: McKenzie 2
Tries: Van Wyk 2, Kirifi
Cons: Barrett 2
Pens: Barrett 2
Yellow card: Scott Scrafton (Hurricanes, 50 – repeated infringements)
Red card: Scott Scrafton (Hurricanes, 63 – professional foul)
Chiefs: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Sean Wainui, 13 Tumua Manu , 12 Quinn Tupaea, 11 Etene Nanai-Seturo, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Pita Gus Sowakula, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Lachlan Boshier, 5 Naitoa Ah Kuoi, 4 Mitchell Brown, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Bradley Slater, 1 Aidan Ross.
Replacements: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Reuben O’Neill, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Dylan Nel, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi , 22 Kaleb Trask, 23 Solomon Alaimalo.
Hurricanes: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Kobus Van Wyk, 13 Peter Umaga-Jensen, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 9 Thomas 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 Fraser Armstrong.
Replacements: 16 Ricky Riccitelli, 17 Ben May, 18 Alex Fidow, 19 Vaea Fifita, 20 Devan Flanders/Liam Mitchell, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Billy Proctor, 23 Wes Goosen.
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe
Assistant referees: James Doleman, Angus Mabey
TMO: Glenn Newman