Chiefs rally from 14 points down to beat Bulls in Hamilton
The Chiefs overturned a 14-point deficit to beat a valiant Bulls side 41-28 in Hamilton on Friday morning.
JOHANNESBURG - The Chiefs overturned a 14-point deficit to beat a valiant Bulls side 41-28 in Hamilton on Friday morning.
Despite going out 28-14 in front at halftime, the Bulls were condemned to their third defeat in the competition and their second on their tour of Australasia.
John Mitchell’s men stormed out the blocks through a sweeping back-line move that put winger Travis Ishmael through a gaping hole in the Chiefs defence, before he put Springbok fullback Warrick Gelant for their first try of the game.
The home team, though, hit back almost immediately through a try by centre Jonathan Fa’auli after the ferocious Chiefs line speed forced Ismael into a handling error and Fa’auli pounced to put the Chiefs level.
The Bulls were taking a ball-in-hand approach and avoided kicking to the dangerous Chiefs counter-attacking back three, and their approach was proving fruitful. Winger Divan Rossouw scored the first of his two tries on the night to take a 14-7 lead.
Rossouw got his double before Brodie Rettalick crashed over for the Bulls. Handre Pollard then added to the scoreline through a try of his own and the Bulls had a handsome 28-14 lead at halftime.
The second half saw a completely different and more ruthless Chiefs side, that were spurred on by their home fans ringing their cowbells. The Chiefs scored 27 unanswered points in the second half in a dominant performance.
Mitchell Brown scored early in the second half, before Rettallick got his second of the night. Fa’auli then turned provider when his beautifully weighted kick found winger Solomon Alaimano who showed great feet to dodge two Bulls defenders to go over the line.
Anton Lienert-Brown then put the proverbial final nail in the Bulls coffin when he took advantage of a handling error with the Bulls trying to run the ball out their own goal line.
The Bulls will now face the mammoth task of trying to topple the Crusaders in Christchurch next week.