Chiefs crowned 2017 Brisbane Global Rugby Tens Champions

13 February, 2017

The Chiefs have been crowned champions of the 2017 Brisbane Global Rugby Tens, defeating the Crusaders 12-5 in a thrilling final at Suncorp Stadium to etch their name in history as the inaugural winners of the tournament.

The Chiefs overcame an early 5-0 deficit to produce a fitting tribute for Sione Lauaki, the former All Black and Chief who passed away overnight at the age of 35.

"We lost a brother today but we just kept on fighting and did what we had to do," Chiefs captain Liam Messam said.

Shaun Stevenson was named MVP of the final and also claimed the Chris Latham trophy for being the tournament's top try scorer.

Queensland Reds wildcard Radike Samo's massive hit on All Blacks centre Seta Tamanivalu on day one saw him awarded the trophy for producing the tournament's outstanding defensive play.

The award will now be named the "Radike Samo Best Defensive Play Award".

Rachael Carroll, chief executive of tournament founder Duco Events, hailed the event as a tremendous success.

"Rugby fans were treated to two incredible days of rugby," Ms Carroll said.

"From the Panasonic Wild Knights' thrilling performances on Day One through to the Chiefs' unstoppable run to the title on Day Two, the sporting entertainment on display was truly captivating.

"It's no secret that much of Australia dealt with a heat wave this weekend, however, thanks to the incredible efforts of our event staff, the tournament ran smoothly and the spectator experience was unaffected by the extreme weather.

"The feedback that we had from the participating teams was that they hugely enjoyed the experience both on and off the field."

Minister for Tourism and Major Events, Kate Jones, said the inaugural Brisbane Global Rugby Tens was a signature addition to Tourism and Events Queensland's $A460 million major events calendar.

“This exciting new event has been a real celebration of world-class rugby in a world-class stadium, showcasing Queensland to a global audience,” Ms Jones said.

“This competition, with its carnival atmosphere, has provided a fantastic experience for rugby fans in its first year attracting thousands of interstate and international visitors.

“We expect Rugby Tens will continue to grow from strength to strength and help to reinforce Queensland’s reputation as a premier event destination.”