30 Mar 2009

Chiefs top NZ side in Super 14

6:34 am on 30 March 2009

The free scoring Chiefs are the top New Zealand at the half way point of rugby's Super 14 competition.

The Chiefs beat the Queensland Reds 50-26 at the weekend. They have now run in 15 tries in their last two games to secure bonus point wins and jump to third on the table with 22 points. The Chiefs have won four games and lost three.

South African side the Sharks head the table with 26 points after beating the Brumbies 35-14 in Durban. They are favoured to win the round robin competition as they play five of their last six at home, with their only other assignment away to the winless Cheetahs.

The Waratahs are second with 23 points after breaking an 80 year drought in Auckland with a 27-22 win over the Blues.

All five New Zealand sides are in the top eight of the competition with Hurricanes fifth on 20 points and the Highlanders, Crusaders and Blues all on 18 points holding sixth to eighth spots. The Hurricanes have a game in hand on the other New Zealand sides.

The unheralded Highlanders pulled off arguably the upset of the season, with a 36-12 win over the previously unbeaten Bulls. The Bulls are now fourth with 22 points but have a game in hand on the other top four sides.

Australian and South African teams share the bottom six positions, though all have a game in hand on the three New Zealand teams on 18 points but cannot overtake the New Zealand sides even with bonus point wins.