The Chiefs have won their first pre-season match 17-12 after scoring a try in the last minute during their match against the NSW Waratahs in Rotorua.

The two sides met at the Rotorua International Stadium today as they build towards the 2016 Super Rugby competition, which gets underway at the end of this month.

The match looked to be heading for a 12-all draw before Chiefs substitute Lalakai Foketi made a break in the final minute and linked up with Monty Ioane, who finished in the corner.

The match kicked off at 4pm today to help the players adjust to the warmer climates they can expect in South Africa and Argentina this season. However, it didn't do a lot to help the crowd numbers, with a lot of people still at work when the match kicked off.

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Chiefs co-captain and fan favourite Sam Cane was ruled out with illness before the game started, while Damian McKenzie was another big name in the Chiefs who didn't take the field despite being named to play.

The first points of the game almost came inside the opening minute but some strong defence stopped the Chiefs from scoring.

Chiefs v Waratahs pre-season match at the Rotorua International Stadium. Kohatu Ruri, 9, left, and Charlie Ngamare, 9. Photo/Ben Fraser
Chiefs v Waratahs pre-season match at the Rotorua International Stadium. Kohatu Ruri, 9, left, and Charlie Ngamare, 9. Photo/Ben Fraser

The visitors, who started the likes of Wallabies stars Michael Hooper and Kurtley Beale as well as former All Black Zac Guildford, marched down the other end of the field to score first. Halfback Nick Phipps scooted over on six minutes down the right side.

New Chiefs signing, and league convert, Glen Fisiiahi restored parity on 18 minutes when he scored a sensational try. He made a lovely break down the right side then got the ball back a few passes later to finish off the play he started.

Halfback Tawera Kerr-Barlow was next to cross for the Chiefs, scoring close to the posts following some good build-up play from his forwards.

The lead didn't last long though for the Chiefs, as Waratahs winger Reece Robinson, formerly from the Parramatta Eels in the NRL, showed his wheels. He got some space down the right side and ran 50m to score close to the posts.

ROTORUA DAILY POST | Sport
16 Feb, 2016 5:10am
2 minutes to read

The teams went into the sheds 12-all at half-time.

New Chiefs signing and flanker Mitchell Karpik had to be helped from the field with injury early in the second half.

As the minutes ticked by the game turned rather messy, with plenty of stoppages and substitutions.

Neither side really looked like scoring the winning try until Foketi made a great break in the dieing seconds to put Ioane in to score.