April 15 (Reuters) - Highlights from week eight of Super Rugby:
Flyhalf Handre Pollard booted 16 points as South Africa’s Bulls ended a three-game losing streak with victory over Argentina’s Jaguares at Loftus Versfeld on Saturday, just their second win in Super Rugby this season.
Tries from wing Travis Ismaiel and lock Lood de Jager saw the Bulls claim victory over a Jaguares side who had more of the possession and territory, but could not make that count on the scoreboard.
The visitors’ only try was scored by scrumhalf Gonzalo Bertranou as they slipped to a third defeat of the season from their seven matches played.
Controversial Kriel try helps Lions roar past Stormers
Abbott scores late try to give Hurricanes close win over Blues
Milner-Skudder racing clock to be fit for Lions tour - Boyd
Rebels to seek compensation from ARU over Super Rugby plans
Crusaders’ Mataele scores three tries in Crockett’s record appearance
ARU will act swiftly to reassure players of future - Cheika
SA Rugby CEO says cull needed, may not be enough
Coles still battling injury blues, to miss Auckland game
Williams allowed to remove advertising from Blues kits
Lions to face Gatland junior in NZ tour opener
Australia delays axing of Force or Rebels
Brumbies safe, Australia to axe Force, Rebels
JRFU welcomes Sunwolves switch to Australian conference
The Lions moved to the top of the South Africa Group with a deserved bonus-point victory over the previously unbeaten Stormers, though their first ever Super Rugby win at Newlands was not without controversy.
The Lions scored tries through hooker Malcolm Marx, centre Harold Vorster, flanker Jaco Kriel and wing Sylvian Mahuza. Kriel’s score was confirmed by Television Match Official Shaun Veldsman, who said he had seen compelling evidence that the ball had been grounded, when TV replays appeared to disagree with his view.
That gave the Lions a 22-13 halftime lead and the second period was all about stout defence before a late try from Mahuza sealed the bonus-point.
Winger Toni Pulu scored a brace of tries as New Zealand’s Chiefs mounted a fantastic comeback from 24-0 down to earn a bonus-point victory and avoid a second successive defeat on their tour of South Africa.
Tries by winger Raymond Rhule, prop Torsten van Jaarsveld and centre Francois Venter had put the home side in control with a 24-point lead after 22 minutes, but the visitors regained their composure and started to pick holes in the Cheetahs’ defence.
Pulu’s double had them trailing by 10 points at halftime, and scrumhalf Tawera Kerr-Barlow, wingers James Lowe and Shaun Stevenson, and prop Hika Elliot sealed victory in the second period.
Centre Reece Hodge kicked a last-gasp penalty as Melbourne Rebels picked up their first Super Rugby win of the season with an upset 19-17 victory over fellow Australian side the Brumbies on Saturday.
Hodge made the difference with his boot, landing four penalties and a conversion as the Rebels let an early 10-point lead slip after conceding three yellow cards. Sefa Naivalu scored the only try for the hosts.
The Brumbies’ 10-game winning streak over Australian sides came to an end despite tries from Henry Speight (2) and Jarrad Butler, though the Australian conference leaders managed to convert just one of them.
Lock Mark Abbott scored his second try of the match with seven minutes remaining to give the Hurricanes a victory over the Blues in a scrappy, error-ridden game at Eden Park.
Abbott, inside centre Ngani Laumape and flyhalf Beauden Barrett crossed in the first half for the visitors while fullback Jordie Barrett slotted four conversions.
Scrumhalf Augustine Pulu, winger Melani Nanai and lock Scott Scrafton all scored tries for the home side with Piers Francis adding two conversions while replacement flyhalf Bryn Gatland added a penalty and conversion.
Wingers Eto Nabuli and Izaia Perese and fullback Karmichael Hunt all grabbed two tries each as the Queensland Reds withstood a late surge from South Africa’s Kings at Lang Park to end a six-game losing streak.
The Reds produced a storming third quarter when they scored five tries, including one to George Smith, while inside centre Duncan Paia‘aua was in the sin bin for a dangerous tackle. Reds flyhalf Quade Cooper added six conversions.
Flanker Chris Cloete, scrumhalf Louis Schreuder, winger Makazole Mapimpi (2) and fullback Masixole Banda all crossed for the Kings, who scored three tries between the 67th and 75th minute to put the Reds under pressure.
Manasa Mataele scored three tries in the first half as the Crusaders celebrated Wyatt Crockett’s record 176th appearance with victory over the Sunwolves in Christchurch.
All Blacks captain Kieran Read, making his first appearance following wrist surgery last year, Ben Funnell, Pete Samu, George Bridge and Whetu Douglas also crossed for the home side.
Richie Mo‘unga slotted three conversions and replacement Marty McKenzie added two more while the Sunwolves were restricted to a Yu Tamura penalty. (Compiled by Greg Stutchbury, Sudipto Ganguly and Nick Said.; Editing by Ed Osmond and Ian Chadband)