Blues replacement Tom Robinson scored what may go down as being one of the individual tries of the Super Rugby Aotearoa season on Saturday night.
The 26-year-olds near 40-metre burst handed his side the lead with just under 20-minutes to play. It was another twist in a match that already had plenty of drama, with the Chiefs having only taken the lead four minutes earlier.
You’re at fullback, Tom Robinson has a full head of steam up, what’re you doing?#SuperRugbyAotearoa
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) March 27, 2021
With the Blues only up 7-0 at half-time, the Chiefs opened the scoring in the second-half through a Damian McKenzie penalty.
Soon after, Anton Lienert-Brown came incredibly close to scoring what would’ve been a go-ahead try, but he was ruled to have knocked it on by the TMO. But then in the 58th minute, a try to Samisoni Taukei’aho handed the hosts their first lead of the night.
Otere Black had a chance to snatch the lead back for the Blues practically immediately after, with Sam Cane having been penalised off the kick-off that followed. But the flyhalf pushed the kick wide right, with he scores staying at 8-7.
But it was all the Blues from there on, until Robinson scored his try. Running the ball out of their half after the 22m drop out. Caleb Clarke made an impressive break down the left edge, but he was stopped by Brad Weber and McKenzie.
A couple of phases later though, Robinson got the ball on the other wing.
With an overlap out-wide, a short ball from Dalton Papalii gave the towering forward some space to run, but he had plenty of work to do – showing great footwork and pace to beat all the Chiefs defenders.
He beat Chiefs flyhalf Kaleb Trask with a right foot step, and this arguably made the try-scoring run possible.
Brad Weber chased Robinson down, but he wasn’t going to be denied, reaching out for the try.
Fans on Twitter have sung Robinsons’ praises after the match, with one user saying that he’ll “be an All Black this year.”
Tom Robinson will be an All Black this year. #CHIvBLU
— Stephen Gallagher (@SWTGallagher) March 27, 2021
Tom Robinson needs a starting job somewhere next season #CHIvBLU
— Miles Thompson (@miles4099) March 27, 2021
Man deserves a start tbh
— Somli (@jamba156) March 27, 2021
— Sean (@SeanTafirenyika) March 27, 2021
From there, the Blues so nearly held on for the win but a McKenzie try in the 80th minute won the match for the hosts.
Luke Jacobson made the break that led to the try, but the fullback showed great skill to cross for the score.
The result it big for both sides, who are separated by just two points on the ladder, with two wins each. But the Blues do still currently have the advantage, sitting in second.
The Crusaders are clear of the pack at the time of writing, sitting eight points clear of the Blues after five rounds.
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