Jaguares beat Chiefs 23-19 in Super Rugby
ROTORUA, New Zealand (AP) Argentina’s Jaguares completed a clean sweep of four matches in Australia and New Zealand when they beat the Chiefs 23-19 in Super Rugby on Friday.
In the other match, the defending champion and first-place Crusaders ran riot in the second half for a 55-10 win over the Melbourne Rebels.
It was the 37th win in a row by New Zealand sides over Australian teams in the past two seasons in Super Rugby.
After wins over the Rebels, ACT Brumbies and Auckland-based Blues – their first win against a New Zealand team – the Jaguares achieved their sixth win from 11 matches to remain in strong contention for a playoff spot.
They owed their win to a penalty try and two yellow cards which reduced the Hamilton-based Chiefs to 13 men for almost 10 minutes in the second half. The unlucky Chiefs also had a try disallowed when a comeback seemed possible.
The Chiefs seemed to have begun a dangerous rally when Charlie Ngatai scored after a poor clearing kick by the Jaguares. But the television match official intervened and drew the referee’s attention to a knock-on earlier in the movement.
The Jaguares edged ahead 23-12 with a penalty in the 70th minute, meaning the Chiefs needed two tries in the last 10 minutes to save the game. They managed one, scoring through debutant Jesse Parete after the final siren to earn a bonus point.
In Melbourne, the Crusaders won their sixth match in a row, and the Rebels lost their fifth consecutive game. The Crusaders scored six converted tries in the second half after leading 13-10 at halftime.
The Rebels lost 88-test Wallaby halfback Will Genia to a knee injury at the end of the first half, not helping the home side’s fortunes in the second.
Team officials said they hoped Genia would be back for next weekend’s match against the Brumbies. Genia had missed Melbourne’s previous two games with a hamstring injury.
Andrew Makalio scored two of the Crusader’s eight tries.