Super Rugby: Chiefs suffer surprise defeat at Lions' hands


The bosses may still not have much to thank for this season, but their fullback depth may be at the top of the list.

After losing Damian McKenzie to a knee injury last weekend, Jack Debreczeni could be in another period behind the scenes.

Debreczeni was eliminated in a cervical collar at the end of the first half of the team's defeat by 23 to 17 for the Lions tonight. While the initial report was that Debreczeni was "well" and free of any serious injuries, Shaun Stevenson could see an increase in back-to-back time when the next driver dropped out of the category.

Stevenson had their number set earlier than expected against the Lions, with Debreczeni having to leave the field while the Chiefs tried to get out of a hole in the second half.

The Lions, who took the stars Malcolm Marx and Elton Jantjies off the bench and to the starting lineup when the final team lists were submitted moments before the match, began with a roar. While the sides disputed possession, it was the visitors who seemed more likely to do something with it.

The bosses had some initial chances to do something with football, but were unable to capitalize on a good position on the pitch, and they lost 3-0 to the game after a Jantjies penalty 10 minutes into the game.

While the Lions had the advantage, neither side seemed particularly convincing. The Lions were able to extend their lead by another 30-minute penalty, as all signs signaled a half without complications.

Instead, Lions made the most of late possession and the amazing use of ability to make two attempts in the final 10 minutes of the first half. Defender Carlu Sadie secured the first attempt of the night after opening the scoring, before No. 8 Warren Whiteley made a chuck dance along the sideline before wing Aphiwe Dyanti seized and ran to score without touching under the posts.

Showing few signs of life for most of the first half, something started for the hosts in the middle of the second half when they began to take advantage of the deficit. An attempt by Ward Sean Wainui provided the spark they needed at his side; prop Nepo Laulala and Tumua Manu midfielder following the example to bring the bosses within three points.

However, a turnaround on their own territory within the last three minutes of the game buried the bosses' hopes for an impressive comeback. Although the Lions could have just met the deadline, Jantjies scored a 30-second goal to add some insurance points and seal a major win for the Lions, who improved their claims for South Africa's open conference.

Lions 23 (Carlu Sadie, Aphiwe Dyanti tries, Elton Jantjies 2 against, 2 pens, dropped the goal)
Heads 17 (Sean Wainui, Nepo Laulala, Tumu Manu tries; Marty McKenzie with)
HT: 20 to 0


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