The Queensland Reds bounced back from last weekend’s drubbing by putting an ill-disciplined Chiefs side to the sword 40-34 to record the first Australian victory in the Trans-Tasman tournament.
The Chiefs stumbled, crashing 40-34 in Townsville as the Reds snapped a run of 13 straight tournament losses for Australian teams.
The Reds, who won the Super Rugby AU tournament, took the lead courtesy of a penalty try, which resulted in a yellow card for Chase Tiatia.
With Tiatia absent, Reds wing Isaac Henry then split the defence and sprinted for the line on 21 minutes in a pivotal moment when Chiefs dangerman Damian McKenzie was sent off for a high shoulder charge.
It was a turning point with Suliasi Vunivalu, Feao Fotuaika, and Henry again all dotting down as they exploited the one-man advantage for a 33-3 lead at the break.
But they lost focus in the second half as the Chiefs came roaring back with Pita Gus Sowakula, Tupou Vaa’i, Reuben O’Neill, Bailyn Sullivan and Xavier Roe all crossing in reply to Filipo Daugunu’s solitary try for the Reds.
‘We set ourselves up with a pretty electric start, capitalising on some ill-discipline,’ said Reds co-skipper Liam Wright. ‘But I’m really not happy with that second half.’
— Super Rugby (@SuperRugbyNZ) May 29, 2021