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Chiefs player ratings vs Reds | Super Rugby Pacific quarter-finals

By Ben Smith
Tupou Vaa'i of the Chiefs celebrates after receiving a panalty during the Super Rugby Pacific Quarter Final match between Chiefs and Queensland Reds at FMG Stadium Waikato, on June 07, 2024, in Hamilton, New Zealand. (Photo by Michael Bradley/Getty Images)

An opening 25-minute blitz by the Chiefs put 28 points on the board with four tries, a double to Samisoni Taukei’aho and one to each winger Emoni Narawa and Etene Nanai-Seturo, in a flawless opening start.


It was all Chiefs as the Reds were dominated in every facet of the game and took a 31-0 lead into half-time.

Two tries to Tate McDermott mounted a brief Reds’ comeback but the Chiefs quickly put the game out of reach with tries to Anton Lienert-Brown and Bradley Slater.

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Here’s how the Chiefs’ players rated in the quarter-final.

1. Aidan Ross – 7

The Chiefs enjoyed a steady scrum on the few occasions there was one and an efficient lineout all night long so credit must go to the front row. The Chiefs maul defence continually repelled the Reds. Ross was industrious with nine tackles.

2. Samisoni Taukei’aho – 9

Had perfect start in this game with five from five at the lineout and two tries to power the Chiefs’ early lead. Brought big hits in defence, dominating the close channels. Pretty close to perfect for the All Black hooker. Finished with seven carries, five defenders beaten and 16 tackles.

3. George Dyer – 7

Had a big goal line tackle with Samipeni Finau early in the second half. Got through the dirty work with plenty of tackles on Reds’ forwards, finishing with 12 in total. Off at 48.

4. Jimmy Tupou – 6

Was the top lineout option for the Chiefs while he was on with three takes. Made 11 tackles in defence. Off at 55.

5. Tupou Vaa’i – 9.5

Vaa’i was a game changer in this quarter-final, really coming into the game at the breakdown. He had a key steal on Tate McDermott at a ruck which led to the fourth try. Produced a miraculous try saving effort on Fraser McReight who was diving over to score. He rubbed out another Reds’ attack inside the Chiefs’ 22 early in the second half with another breakdown pen.

6. Samipeni Finau – 7

Was skinned down his side on a scrum deep inside the Reds’ half but otherwise very good. Had a high work rate with 16 tackles. Came up with a key lineout steal late in the first half, and finished with two turnovers. Leaked a penalty in the second half during a wave of Reds momentum.

7. Luke Jacobson – 7

Cleaned the first ruck on many occasion in his role openside. Stalked the Reds carry options from the set-piece well. It was really a night for off-the-ball work for Jacobson. Conceded a penalty playing on the edge at the maul but finished as the Chiefs top tackler with 20.
The big No 8 was the Chiefs main carry option on the night and powered through the Reds for 74 run metres on 16 carries. Offered a nice offload to Narawa for his try, playing on the flank and punching through Reds’ defenders before giving the ball on the inside. Looked powerful on every carry, giving the Chiefs attack consistent gain line. A big game from the loose forward that led the way. Off at 66.

9. Cortez Ratima – 7

Delivered a consistent and sharp pass to Damian McKenzie all night. Sniped a couple times to keep the Reds defence honest, nearly getting through in the first half. Won a breakdown turnover in the first half and had a key intercept a short while later. A solid performance from the halfback.

10. Damian McKenzie – 8

Was a calm yet influential performance from the Chiefs 10. Looked in complete control of all his options and showed his full attacking game with long passes, short passes and attacking kicks. The chip kick paid off a couple of times to get behind the Reds line. Kicked 6/6 off the tee. Had a beautiful assist for Lienert-Brown holding up the ball against Tate McDermott and Josh Flook.

Scored his sixth of the season with a pick up and score. He was penalised for a charge down attempt that took out the kicker. Came up with a 50-22 in the second half. Made a positive impact in this game for the Chiefs.

12. Rameka Poihipi – 7

The Chiefs midfield was solid defensively with this pairing. They handled the Reds’ launch plays well and kept Hunter Paisami and Josh Flook under wraps. Poihipi made 14 tackles and did his job.

13. Anton Lienert-Brown – 8

Had a line break assist off a well-worked scrum play late in the first half. Ran a perfect line outside D-Mac for the Chiefs’ first try of the second half. Defensively was very sound as usual. Had 10 tackles.

14. Emoni Narawa – 7

Had numerous runs in the first half and looked his usual dangerous self. Bagged a try inside Satiti and set up another for Taukei’aho. Off in the 52nd minute.

15. Shaun Stevenson – 7.5

Produced a piece of brilliance for the Chiefs’ fourth try after a chip kick from Damian McKenzie. Stevenson latched onto the bouncnig ball, beat Tom Lynagh, then put a second kick across the field for Etene Nanai-Seturo. Kicked well out-of-hand as one the Chiefs’ exit options. Off at half-time.

16. Bradley Slater – 6 – On at 52. Carried a few times. Bagged a maul try at the back of a strong Chiefs’ drive. The pack didn’t lose a beat with the new front row on.
17. Jared Proffit – 6 – On at 48. All the front row reserves made an impact with effort in defence and carries.

18. Reuben O’Neill – 6 – On at 48.

19. Naitoa Ah Kuoi – 5- On at 55. Got heavily involved in the clean out work.
20. Simon Parker – N/A – On at 66.

21. Xavier Roe – N/A – On at 69. Had the chance to run a few phases and looked good.

22. Quinn Tupaea – 6 – On at 52. Defended resolutely off set-piece in the midfield and made his presence felt.

23. Daniel Rona – N/A – On at 40.

Watch the exclusive reveal-all episode of Walk the Talk with Ardie Savea as he chats to Jim Hamilton about the RWC 2023 experience, life in Japan, playing for the All Blacks and what the future holds. Watch now for free on RugbyPass TV


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Samuel 15 days ago

Cody has dipped yet again and he’s hung around for four more years yet he no where near world class level to play at highest level not enough newbys given the chance like Darry is super at lock for ABs and many more like hims

Samuel 15 days ago

Cody went through a heck of a bad patch during fosters tenure the only reason foster stayed in his job was because of tokiahos performance against the books over there a

T-Bone 15 days ago

Where an earth has Sititi come from
Razor would have been looking hard at Sotutu who is playing very well but this young man has a big future

DMac will have no worries at test level at 10
His kicking is 85% this year too

Who his half back is will be a very hard decision
5 decent candidates (without Roigard)
Yes Christie was very good for the Blues tonight

Troy 16 days ago

Couldn't believe the level of media hype Cody Taylor received on his return from his sabbatical . It was like his second coming where everybody had been waiting his return and we were all safe now he was back. He played as you would expect of a long standing All Black but nothing outstanding for 2 games (that were of no consequence, in a side malfunctioning all season), and they were clamouring for his test recall off the back of it.
Samisoni Taukei'aho has been playing his usual strong game all season and really ramped it up last night for their quarter final playoff against the Reds. This was a game that mattered and he delivered big time showing why he or Asafo Aumua should be the starting test rake based on their season long performances.
Well done the Chiefs who showed once again the current Australian rugby default of not turning up when the pressure is really on.
Go the Hurricanes!

David 16 days ago

Top effort by the whole team. First 25 min were outstanding, maybe the best by any team this season?

SadersMan 16 days ago

Well done Chiefs!!!!!

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