Live updates: Super Rugby Pacific - Chiefs v Blues at FMG Stadium, Hamilton

Chiefs - 0        Blues - 25   

FULLTIME - Well, that was convincing. Not a point on the board for the Chiefs, as the Blues surge to the top of the standings. Click here for a full wrap and highlights.

74 mins - TRY BLUES to AJ Lam

Barrett spots his wing unmarked and throws a mammoth pass to send him over for the bonus point try.

72 mins - Penalty Blues. They turn down the easy three points to push for a bonus point try.

70 mins - Chiefs on the attack, inside the 22m. Cane makes extra movements after the tackle, penalty Blues. Back to halfway.

66 mins - Perofeta snaps a drop goal, hits the upright! Gatland clears back to halfway.

64 mins - Nanai-Seturo with room to move and he pins his ears back for the corner. Three Blues players come across in cover defence but he shows great strength to slide over the chalk under duress. Video seems to show his elbow grazing the chalk before the ball is grounded. No try.

63 mins - More cynical play from the Blues sees their third player of the day heading to the naughty chair, this time it's Marcel Renata.

60 mins - Big chance for the Chiefs here, throwing the 5m lineout. Tiatia unmarked out wide but Nanai-Seturo can't find him with his pass, which bounces into touch.

53 mins - TRY BLUES to Tom Robinson

Telea carves his way up field, links with Ioane, who streaks clear and is just brought down by the bootlaces. Barrett looks up and lays on a crossfield kick for his flanker, who dives and places the ball in the corner in one swift motion. Brilliant. Perofeta slots the conversion from the sideline. Long way back for the Chiefs now. (Blues 20-0)

52 mins - Blues rumble to halfway. Nock kicks out on the full, Chiefs lineout at halfway.

47 mins - Etene Nani-Seturo is over under the crossbar! Referee wants to have a look at this for a potential obstruction by Sam Cane. Yep, we're coming back for a Blues penalty, as Nock returns to restore them to their full complement.

44 mins - Mistake gives the B lues a scrum and Barrett bangs one deep into Chiefs territory for a lineout. Romano returns, Blues back to 14 men. Nock still in the bin.

41 mins - Blues lineout at halfway after an exchange of kicks. Chiefs win a penalty and move to a lineout at the Blues 22m.

Second half underway...


40 mins - Another penalty, this time the Chiefs opt for a 5m lineout.

Slick set piece move puts Samisoni Taukei'aho over in the corner but Mark Telea looks to have forced the ball free. TMO confirms no try. Incredible defensive play by the wing and the Blues somehow survive.

39 mins - Nanai-Seturo almost through! More cynical play, and Sam Nock is heading to the sinbin. Blues down to 13 men.

37 mins - Chiefs pack a 5m scrum, penalty advantage after a Barrett interception. They'll repack it and have another crack.

Sowakula peels off and charges for the line. He's over the chalk but held up. Line dropout for the Blues.

35 mins - Chiefs launch at the Blue's line. Recycle well but the Blues' defence is up to the task. Romano pinged for playing the ball at the ruck off his feet, he cops a yellow card for cynical play.

28 mins - Offside penalty against the Chiefs gives Perofeta a straightforward shot at goal. Makes no mistake. (Blues 13-0)

26 mins - Great battle at the breakdown out there. Blues win another penalty, superb Barrett touchfinder sets up a lineout inside the Chiefs' 22m. Dicey setpiece play ends with the ball in touch.

22 mins - Chiefs finally with some field position, lineout at the Blues' 22m. Blues defence holds and wins a relieving penalty.

16 mins - Blues hot on attack, inches short.

TRY BLUES to Tom Robinson

The flanker hits a short ball at pace and does really well to twist in the tackle and place the ball back over his head, right between the posts. (Blues 10-0)

14 mins - Chiefs shunt Sotutu into touch right at the corner flag. Sturdy defence by the hosts.

11 mins - Penalty to the Blues, they call for a 5m scrum right next to the posts. Chiefs concede another couple of penalties at the scrum, they may lose another player soon.

9 mins - Uh oh, Boshier is in trouble here for a tip tackle on Josh Goodhue. Referees consult... yellow card, it is. Barrett will set-up a 5m lineout.

6 mins - Barrett cashes in the penalty advantage. Perofeta will have a crack at the posts, 22m on the angle. Slots it. (Blues 3-0)

Anton Lienert-Brown in clear pain, clutching his shoulder. He leaves and will play no further part, Tupaea in to replace him. Huge blow.

5 mins - Dominant Blues scrum gives the backline space to work, Heem runs it down to the Chiefs' 22m.

1st min - Blues work the kick off out of their own half, risky offload goes into touch for a Chiefs 10m lineout.

We're underway...

7:04pm - Late setback for the Blues, with All Blacks halfback Finlay Christie limping off during warm-ups. Sam Nock is promoted to the starting line-up.

7pm - Crisp and clear in the Tron this evening. This should be another tight one.


Kia ora and welcome to our live coverage of the Super Rugby Pacific clash between the Chiefs and the Blues at FMG Stadium.

The Blues will welcome All Blacks first-five Beauden Barrett back into the fray after a two-game absence, as they chase a sixth consecutive win.

Meanwhile, the Chiefs will be out to avenge their two-point defeat at Eden Park back in round two, coming in fresh from a hard-fought win over the Hurricanes.

We'll have all of the action from 7:05pm.

TAB betting odds:

Chiefs - $1.72       Blues - $2.05

Team line-ups:

Chiefs: 1-Aidan Ross, 2-Samisoni Taukei'aho, 3-Angus Ta'avao, 4-Josh Lord, 5-Naitoa Ah Kuoi, 6-Kaylum Boshier, 7-Sam Cane (cc), 8-Pita Gus Sowakula, 9-Brad Weber, 10-Bryn Gatland, 11-Etene Nanai-Seturo, 12-Alex Nankivell, 13-Anton Lienert-Brown, 14-Emoni Narawa, 15-Kaleb Trask

Reserves: 16-Bradley Slater, 17-Ollie Norris, 18-George Dyer, 19-Samipeni Finau, 20-Luke Jacobson, 21-Cortez Ratima, 22-Quinn Tupaea, 23-Chase Tiatia

Blues: 1-Alex Hodgman, 2-Kurt Eklund, 3-Ofa Tuungafasi, 4-Luke Romano, 5-Josh Goodhue, 6-Tom Robinson, 7-Dalton Papalii, 8-Hoskins Sotutu, 9-Finlay Christie, 10-Beauden Barrett, 11-Mark Telea, 12-Bryce Heem, 13-Rieko Ioane, 14-Jacob Ratumaitavuki-Kneepens, 15-Stephen Perofeta

Reserves: 16-Ricky Riccitelli, 17-Jordan Lay, 18-Marcel Renata, 19-James Tucker, 20-Adrian Choat, 21-Sam Nock, 22-Tanielu Tele'a, 23-AJ Lam

Roger Tuivasa-Sheck unable to contain excitement as Blues return draws nearer

By Alex Powell

Any excitement that Blues fans feel for the impending return of Roger Tuivasa-Sheck is dwarfed by the star midfielder himself, assistant coach Dan Halangahu says.

In his first season with the Blues after switching from rugby league and NZ Warriors, Tuivasa-Sheck has spent the past four games on the sidelines after suffering a shoulder injury in last month's 24-22 victory over the Chiefs.

But even out injured, Tuivasa-Sheck has still been a presence in the Blues' camp during their Super Rugby Pacific campaign.

The 28-year-old's enthusiasm has provided a lift for his teammates as they prepare to face the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.

And while Tuivasa-Sheck's still not quite ready to make his playing return, Halangahu and the Blues' coaching staff acknowledge he'll be back on the field sooner rather than later.

"We're really hopeful for next week, he has come through better than expected," Halangahu said. "We're getting excited, everyone's getting excited to see him back out there. He's running around like he's an 18-year-old and it's his first training session.

"It's infectious, the passion that Roger brings, and how much he loves the game.

"We all might get a bit tired from three games in a week, and there are guys like Roger and Beauden [Barrett] itching to get back out there."

Barrett's return is another boost for the Blues, after missing back-to-back matches against Moana Pasifika following a head knock against the Highlanders.

And for the Blues, Barrett's on-field leadership in support of captain Dalton Papalii sees him stand tall as one of the team's most important players.

"It's huge," Halangahu said of Barrett's comeback. "We know that Stevie's [Stephen Perofeta] been doing a great job for us, whether he's at 10 or 15.

"To have Beauden's class back; his experience is a huge bonus for us. He's always driving us all to get better.

"What we've spoken about with this team is the leadership we bring. Dalton's doing a great job in that role up front, but to have Beaudy [Barrett] there as his assistant, they're a really good team."