2019 Super Rugby: Wins for Highlanders, Lions, Crusaders in round one

Highlanders came from behind to beat the Chiefs 30-27 in the opening of 2019 Super Rugby season in Hamilton New Zealand.

It was the Highlanders who struck early through lock Pari Pari Parkinson who scored the first try of the new season as the Chiefs responded through Canadian International Tyler Ardron as Angus Ta’avao scored a try with season debutante Etene Nanai-Seturo bagging a brace that didn’t stop the visitors who finished the game the stronger of the two sides courtesy of tries by Shanon Fritzell and Aaron Smith and extras by Josh Ioane.

The Rebels have opened their Super Rugby season with a 34-27 win over the Brumbies. The victory – rated a slight upset by the bookmakers – saw the Rebels run in five tries to the Brumbies’ four, with Quade Cooper putting in an acclaimed performance for the Rebels at first-five eighth.

Then the Crusaders held off a second-half fightback from the Blues to win their clash 24-22. Two penalty tries and a brace from Manasa Mataele where enough to oversee a late response by Augustine Pulu try, Ofa Tu’ungafasi, Akira Ione and Otere Black extras.

The Hurricanes, through Du’Plessis Kirifi’s try in the 75th minute, survived a late score to beat the Waratahs 20-19 in Sydney. Ardie Savea run in one try as Jordie Barrett slotted two penalties and two conversions past Waratah’s points by Curtis Rona try, four penalties and a conversion from Bernard Foley.

Sharks routed Sunwolves 45-10 with six tries in Singapore courtesy of Springboks test hooker Akker van der Merwe who grabbed two tries while Loose forward Daniel du Preez, S’bu Nkosi, Makazole Mapimpi and Jeremy Ward each crossed over once with Robert du Preez adding the extras as Shane Gates scored the Sunwolves only try and Former Highlanders first five-eighths Hayden Parker had a hand in all the Sunwolves’ points.

Bulls thumped stormers 40-3 where the home side struck first through Rosko Specman for the opening try. The Stormers hit back soon with SP Marais slotting a penalty, but that would be all after Specman went in for his second try with Jonny Kotze and Jesse Kriel adding each a piece following four consecutive penalties from flyhalf Handre Pollard adding to the Stormers’ woes.

In the last match of the day, Lions beat Jaguares 25-13 the first time in Buenos Aires thanks to flanker Marnus Schoeman who scored all three tries for the South African visitors, who have reached the past three Super Rugby finals, while Elton Jantjies nailed two conversions and two penalties as Santiago Medrano bagged try for the Jaguares and Joaquin Diaz Bonilla scoring a conversion and three penalties.

Super Rugby round one

Chiefs 27 – 30 Highlanders

Brumbies 27 – 34 Rebels

Blues 22 – 24 Crusaders

Waratahs 19 – 20 Hurricanes

Sunwolves 10 – 45 Sharks

Bulls 40 – 3 Stormers

Jaguares 16 – 25 Lions

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