We are about 25 minutes away from kick off at Sky Stadium. Stay with us for all the live action.
When the Chiefs hosted the Hurricanes earlier in Super Rugby Aotearoa the Canes ran out 26-18 winners. The Wellington-based outfit also beat he Chiefs in Super Rugby proper before COVID-19 ended the season.
The Hurricanes set piece has really started to hit its straps during this fine winning run. Last time out they disrupted the Crusaders formidable line-out which laid the foundation for the victory.It is an area in which the Chiefs has struggled so that would be an area to keep an eye on today.
After a slow start to Super Rugby Aotearoa the Hurricanes have now won their last four matches. In that run they also broke the Crusaders 36-match unbeaten Super Rugby run in Christchurch with a 34-32 win.
The Chiefs have not been anywhere near their best but they have lost a few extremely tight matches. Over the last three or four matches they have also been on the receiving end of some, let us say, dubious refereeing decisions. Ending a season on a high will at the very least give them something to smile about.
This is the Chiefs final match of the season and are winless in their 7 matches. That is a streak Warren Gatland will want to stop today after calls became louder over the last week for him to be sacked as coach.
The Hurricanes come into this clash knowing that a bonus point victory would take them within a point of the second placed Blues and three points of the Crusaders. The title remains unlikely but the Canes can sneak second place should they win their final two matches and the Blues lose to the Crusaders next week.
Chiefs – 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Shaun Stevenson, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Alex Nankivell, 11 Sean Wainui, 10 Kaleb Trask, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Pita Gus Sowakula, 7 Sam Cane (c), 6 Luke Jacobson, 5 Mitchell Brown, 4 Naitoa Ah Kuoi, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 1 Ollie Norris.
Subs: 16 Bradley Slater, 17 Rob Cobb, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Mitchell Karpik, 21 Lisati Milo-Harris, 22 Quinn Tupaea, 23 Kini Naholo.
Hurricanes – 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Peter Umaga-Jensen, 12 Vince Aso, 11 Wes Goosen, 10 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 9 TJ Perenara (c-c), 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Du’Plessis Kirifi, 6 Reed Prinsep, 5 Scott Scrafton, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Dane Coles (c-c), 1 Ben May.
Subs: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 Tevita Mafileo, 18 Pouri Rakete-Stones, 19 Kane Le’aupepe, 20 Devan Flanders, 21 Jamie Booth, 22 Billy Proctor, 23 Jonah Lowe.
Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the Super Rugby Aotearoa clash between the Hurricanes and the Chiefs at Sky Stadium, Wellington.
KICK OFF! 0-0. Garden-Bachop gets us underway in Wellington. The Chiefs collect and take the ball through two phases before McKenzie clears upfield.
Chiefs have an early chance for points with McKenzie going for goal from 45 meters out, straight in front. Unfortunately the distance isn't quite there and the ball bounces back off the crossbar.
Hurricanes win a penalty for the Chiefs being offside but go for the line-out opposed to the points. Line-out 10 meters out from the Chiefs line.
TRY! HURRICANES! UMAGA-JENSEN! 5-0. The Canes win the line-out and go from side to side as the big men make meters towards the Chiefs line. After five phases and under advantage Umaga-Jensen takes flat pass from Perenara and crashes over beneath the uprights.
CONVERSION! BARRETT! 7-0. Simple kick from in front to add the extras.
Hurricanes mean business tonight! Once again they are deep inside Chiefs territory but this time it is the visitors ball at the line-out. Great intensity at the start of this match.
Umaga-Jensen breaks into the Chiefs 22 with another good run but play is pulled back towards the Chiefs 10m line. There was a clear forward pass which sent Umaga-Jensen away.
Trask make a good kick from within his own half as it bounces out on the Hurricanes 22. The Chiefs will want to put some pressure on the Canes here after absorbing all the early pressure.
Scrafton does some superb work at the line-out. The Chiefs try to set up a maul on the Hurricanes 10m line but he comes straight through the middle to rip possession away to win a scrum.
Hurricanes win another penalty for a Chiefs player not rolling away. Barrett will kick for touch and sets the line-out up 5 meters inside the 22 of the Chiefs.
A long facet of play as both teams turn the ball over and try to keep it in hand. The Chiefs eventually win the battle as a kick down field and a good chase results in Goosen kicking the ball out inside his own 22. The visitors will want to get some points here.
Both teams looking to keep ball in hand tonight which is making for an exciting contest.
PENALTY! CHIEFS! MCKENZIE! 7-3. McKenzie gets the Chiefs on the board from straight in front on the 22. The offside came after the Hurricanes defence rushed up a bit too early.
Sam Cane is down with what looks to be a heavy hit to the head and neck area. When play restarts it will be a Hurricanes scrum just outside the Chiefs 22.
TRY! HURRICANES! UMAGA-JENSEN! 12-3. Superb try off first phase. Perenara goes to the left off the back of a dominant scrum. Umaga-Jensen beats a defender and gives to Goosen who puts his ears back before finding an inside pass to Umaga-Jensen just before being taken into touch.
Barrett misses the conversion from out wide.
Chiefs are once again creating their own problems here today. Fortunately desperate defence allows them to turn the ball over on their own line and clear. Hurricanes can sense the game is there for the taking before the break.
Hurricanes have a scrum inside their own half and kicks off first phase. The Chiefs return the favour as for the first time in the match we start seeing a bit of a kicking contest.
YELLOW CARD! Van Wyk is sent to the bin for a dangerous tackle as the hosts go down to 14 men. Is this the way back for the Chiefs?
Chiefs win an offside penalty and clear to touch. Can they make this count? The line-out is 10 meters from the Canes line.
The Chiefs they have have scored through Weber but there was a foot in touch. However, it was under advantage so the Chiefs have another line-out on the Canes 5m line.
The forward packs of the two teams seem to be matching up pretty well but the Hurricanes have found some gaps in the outside channels of the Chiefs defence. The visitors may want to tighten that up while on attack they need to get McKenzie on the ball in 3rd and 4th phase play to exploit the space.
HALF TIME! 12-3. Both teams have great attacking intentions but too many errors have made for a bit of a stop-start affair. The Chiefs certainly aren't out of the game just yet but the Hurricanes have been the better side. With 65% possession they'd want more than a 9 point lead though.
KICK OFF! 12-3. We are underway in the second half. The Chiefs still have a few minutes against 14 men and will want to make it count.
Chiefs have started the second half well and have a line-out on the Hurricanes 5m line.
TRY! CHIEFS! WAINUI! 12-8. The Chiefs go wide after trying to maul the Canes over. The 14 man Canes defence is a man short as Wainui goes over in the corner.
CONVERSION! MCKENZIE! 12-10. Superb kick from the touchline by McKenzie to make it a 2-point game.
TRY! HURRICANES! COLES! 17-10. What a brilliant try! It is first the Chiefs that run from their own 22 and make the break but lose the ball on the Hurricanes 22. The hosts then run back at them before a high kick goes up and Barrett wins the ball. From there it is Perenara who breaks but is tackled 10 meters from the line. Quick ball ensures Coles can go over in the left hand corner.
Barrett strikes the post with the conversion so the Chiefs remain within one score. The Canes are back to 15 men.
PENALTY! CHIEFS! MCKENZIE! 17-13. Offside penalty against the Hurricanes beneath their uprights and McKenzie makes no mistake.
Hurricanes now win a penalty inside Chiefs territory. They are not interested in the three points as Barrett sticks it out 7 meters from the Chiefs line.
TRY! HURRICANES! VAN WYK! 22-13. Clever from the Hurricanes as they set up for the ball and as the Chiefs defence comes in tight they get the ball out. Garden-Bachop puts in the cross-kick and no one is near Van Wyk as he collects and scores.
CONVERSION! BARRETT! 24-13. Good conversion by Barrett from about 5 meters from touch.
Chiefs can hit back as they put the ball out inside the Hurricanes 22.
Another penalty to the Chiefs and this time the line-out is 5 meters out.
TRY! CHIEFS! SLATER! 24-18. Slater scores off the back of the maul to get the Chiefs right back in the match. It also takes away the Hurricanes bonus point.
McKenzie is just wide with the kick so we now have a 6 point game with 14 minutes to play.
Chiefs are coming at the Hurricanes now. Some quick hands as they work their way upfield creates space but McKenzie's pass goes into touch inside the Canes 22.
The Hurricanes are lucky to get a scrum just outside the Chiefs 22 after a little knock-on in the line-out. They will want another try to get that bonus point back.
TRY! HURRICANES! PROCTOR! 29-18. Brilliant by Booth who makes a break inside the Chiefs 22 and then finds the offload to Proctor who scores.
CONVERSION! BARRETT! 31-18. Easy conversion for Barrett.
Barrett puts the ball out on the Chiefs 5m line as they look to put the Chiefs to bed.
FULL TIME! 31-18. The Hurricanes have done what they needed to do by getting the five points. It wasn't easy but the Chiefs confidence was just not high enough to compete. This was the Chiefs last match of the season so end with 8 from 8 defeats. We will see you tomorrow when the Crusaders host the Highlanders.