New South Wales beats Queensland in Super Rugby opener

Yu Tamura of Japan's Sunwolves runs during the opening ceremony of their match against South Africa's Lions at the Super Rugby in Tokyo, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)
AP

SYDNEY (AP) The long and mostly intense rivalry between the Australian states of New South Wales and Queensland was no contest Saturday when the Waratahs rolled to a 30-10 home win over the Reds in the opening round of Super Rugby on Saturday.

The Waratahs scored four tries to one, racking up their fifth straight win over the Reds, in front of 24,044 at Sydney Football Stadium.

First-half tries to captain and openside flanker Michael Hooper, winger Matt Carraro and David Horwitz set up a 20-0 halftime lead for New South Wales.

Earlier at Christchurch, New Zealand, captain Sam Cane scored from a lineout drive in the 77th minute to clinch the Chiefs' 27-21 away win over the Crusaders.

Fullback Damian McKenzie had converted his own try nine minutes earlier to give the Chiefs a 22-21 advantage in a match in which the lead changed hands five times. But it took Cane's try from a concerted lineout drive three minutes before fulltime to finally decide a match in which the largest lead enjoyed by either side was six points.

Richie Mo'unga, who is 21, stepped into the boots of retired All Blacks flyhalf Dan Carter to score 16 points for the Crusaders, lifting his team to a 21-15 lead before two late tries sealed the Chiefs' victory.

The debut of the Tokyo-based Sunwolves in the competition ended in defeat when they were beaten 26-13 at home by the Johannesburg-based Lions.

The visitors dominated the first half with tries by Robbie Coetzee and Courtnall Skosan to take a 12-6 lead at halftime, and that became 19-6 early in the second half after a try by Jaco Kriel and conversion by Elton Jantjies.

Shota Horie gave the capacity crowd a thrill when he scored the Sunwolves' historic first try in the 59th minute, but hopes of a comeback were soon ended when Lionel Mapoe went over for another try for the Lions in the 65th minute.

New Zealander Mark Hammett, the former All Blacks hooker, was introduced as coach of the Sunwolves on Dec. 21 and his team came together just over two weeks ago. They had only one formal trial match before Saturday's contest.

''You can always handle losing if you know the players gave everything,'' Hammett said. ''We are very proud of our players given the short time that was involved in getting ready.''