The Chiefs turned it on in the second half to thump the Blues 30-9 in a mostly uninspiring Vodacom Super 14 clash in Auckland on Saturday.
The teams were locked at 6-all at the break after an opening 40 minutes that saw both teams struggle to control the ball in the wet conditions.
The Blues shaded the visitors in the territory and possession stakes before the break and defended superbly, but in the second half it was all the Chiefs. And by the end, the score was a record for the Chiefs in Super Rugby against the Blues and took their winning streak over the Aucklanders to three in-a-row.
Chiefs flyhalf David Hill missed a sitter from in front early on, but was oustanding thereafter slotting six from seven to go with his seven from seven last weekend. Hill finished with a personal haul of 20 points via a try, three conversions and three penalties.
Hill banged over two penalties in a dull first half that was matched by the Blues’ Luke McAlister. The Blues No 10 then gave his team a 9-6 lead in the 50th minute in what was looking like a game that would go down to the wire. That was the last time they were really in the match.
The Chiefs replied through a Hill try three minutes later and added further five-pointers from Byron Kelleher (68th min) and an intercept by Sosene Anesi (75th min) to shut out the former champions.
The conditions never allowed the teams to play the expansive game that was predicted as the forwards had to battle hard throughout. In the end the Chiefs were too good in this department and it ultimately led to a runaway victory.
The Chiefs moved up to sixth spot on the log – the same as last year – but could be leapfrogged by the Bulls if they beat the Stormers at newlands this afternoon. The Blues ended eighth.
Penalties: Luke McAlister 3 (13th min, 34th min, 50th min)
Tries: David Hill (53rd min), Byron Kelleher (68th min), Sosene Anesi (75th min)
Conversions: David Hill 3 (53rd min, 68th min, 75th min)
Penalties: Hill 3 (19th min, 39th min, 66th min)
By Andrew Hollely