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Errors deny Blues chance to halt streak

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Lynn McConnell     14 Apr 2019     Getty Images

Coach Leon MacDonald said it had been a great game of rugby and it had been disappointing not to secure the win at the end.

But he said the Blues had been chasing the game throughout and they had paid the price for a few errors and the Chiefs had been good enough to capitalise.

"I thought some of our play was really good, they were scrambling at the end there and it was disappointing to not quite get home. There were a lot of little things.

"We got bettered at the breakdown, they were really good over the ball and we just missed turnovers at critical times," he said.

The game had again highlighted one problem the Blues had of conceding points after scoring points themselves and it was something they had been talking about.

"The fact we continued to keep gritting it right until the end is great but we were guilty of critical errors at critical times and these games are won and lost on those. We're frustrated about that," he said.

MacDonald again highlighted flanker Tom Robinson's contribution and said he hadn't had a flat game yet, or a flat day on the training field.

"It is heartening to see, it was a pretty physical exchange between both packs and there were some points where we had dominance in the scrum and they would come back and get us at the maul so it was a real arm wrestle out there," he said.

Second five-eighths Ma'a Nonu had contributed with an impressive game again, among several others in the side, but MacDonald said he was pleased he wasn't in the channel on the runs Nonu had when scoring tries. He had been like a steam train, he said.

Captain and lock Patrick Tuipulotu said the Chiefs had brought a lot more edge to the breakdown and the Blues had struggled to nullify that.

"A lot of their tries came from poor errors on our part. That first try they read that well and did their homework, a couple of others we just weren't on," he said.

It wasn't good enough that the Blues were scoring by reacting to Chiefs tries, they needed to be pro-active as well.

Tuipulotu said the loss hurt and he knew the Blues were capable of winning the game but they had let themselves down in certain parts.

However, he felt the side, compared to that of the last few years, was a lot further ahead and there was a good feeling around the team, although they were hurting after the loss.