Chiefs outplay Drua in thriller

March 17, 2024 7:30 am

[Source: Super Rugby/Facebook]

The Swire Shipping Fijian Drua have suffered a 41-29 defeat against a formidable Chiefs outfit in Hamilton last night.

The hosts slick passing and numerous defensive and handling errors cost the Drua.

The Fijian Drua got off to a promising start when centre Iosefo Masi received a pass from halfback Simione Kuruvoli and sprinting to score their first try just six minutes into the game.

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Flyhalf Isaiah Armstrong-Ravula added the conversion for a 7-0 lead.

However, the Chiefs swiftly retaliated with a try to flanker Kaylum Boshier just a minute later.

They maintained the pressure on the Drua, culminating in Cortez Ratima’s try, putting them ahead 14-7 in the 15th minute.

However, the Fijian Drua remained undeterred by the setback, continuing to push forward.

Iosefo Masi after being named the Player of the Match [Source: Fijian Drua]

Masi capitalized on a gap in the defense to score his second try in the 21st minute of play from a penalty.

Armstrong-Ravula converted the try to level the scores at 14-all.

Chiefs’ flyhalf Damien McKenzie extended their lead with a penalty awarded in the 28th minute, followed by winger Daniel Rona scoring their third try, with a successful conversion five minutes later.

Armstrong-Ravula once again demonstrated his accuracy by kicking another penalty in the 36th minute, narrowing the points.

The Chiefs went into halftime leading 24-17.

It was mostly a one way traffic in the second half as Chiefs came back firing through winger Erene Nanai-Saturo, who dotted their fourth try just three minutes into the half with a successful conversion from McKenzie to extend their lead to 31-17.

The Drua had multiple chances to score points but were let down due by handling errors and poor decisions.

Chiefs’ Boshier managed to score a brace in the 61st minute all thanks to a pass well-orchestrated pass from McKenzie as they continued to dominate the Drua in all aspects of the game.

McKenzie extended the Chiefs lead to 41-17 with a successful penalty kick 6 minutes later.

The Drua were finally was able to break the strong Chiefs defense as replacement Te Ahiwaru Cirikidaveta dived over the tryline to reduce the deficit to 24-41 just a minute later.

The Chiefs then went on a rampage and were rewarded with a brilliant kick-and-chase try to winger Shaun Stevenson.

The Drua however finished with a flourish as they mounted phase after phase of attack on the Chiefs before a cutout pass from replacement halfback Peni Matawalu found Kemu Valetini in the corner with a try on the full-time.

Armstrong-Ravula missed the conversion from the sideline to bring the game to an end.

The Fijian Drua will host the Waratahs next weekend at 1.05pm at Churchill Park in Lautoka.

You can watch it LIVE on the FBC Sports HD Channel.