A late Brad Weber try has lifted the Chiefs to a 30-26 Super Rugby win over the Jaguares, breaking hearts in Buenos Aires in the process.
The first-ever Super Rugby game in Argentina ended in thrilling style as the hosts scored twice in two minutes to claim a three-point lead before the Chiefs reserve halfback Weber finished a brilliant team try with 90 seconds remaining.
The Chiefs’ third win from four games sends them to the top of the Australasian group – one point ahead of the Brumbies, Highlanders and Rebels – and one point behind overall competition leaders the Sharks.
They scored four tries to three against a Jaguares team who looked like they had done enough to snatch victory at the Jose Amalfitani Stadium when halfback Martin Landajo crossed in the 72nd minute, followed by a sweeping try to reserve back Matias Moroni from the subsequent kick-off.
The Chiefs regrouped to end their short tour of South Africa and Argentina on a high note, putting the exclamation mark on a game which was played at high speed throughout.
A key period was just before and after halftime when the Chiefs were reduced to 14 men after halfback Tawera Kerr-Barlow was shown a yellow card for a professional foul.
Trailing 14-13 at the time, they won that period 3-0 and set up winger James Lowe for a try soon after their full contingent was restored to move nine points clear.
They were on the back foot at scrum time for long periods, pushed around by a Pumas-dominated pack whose advantage was exacerbated by a field surface which broke up badly at times.
Earlier, Jaguares captain Agustin Creevy put his side 8-3 ahead through a try from a lineout drive before the Chiefs responded through winger Sam McNicol and fullback Damian McKenzie.
The Jaguares, who opened with a narrow win and loss against the Cheetahs and Sharks respectively in South Africa, are at home again next week to the Stormers.
The Chiefs return home to host the Force but may be without lock Johan Bardoul, who was forced off with a thumb injury.
There could also be a judicial question mark over Chiefs co-captain Sam Cane, who was penalised for taking out opposition prop Tetaz Chaparro at a ruck with his shoulder but faced no further on-field punishment.
Chaparro was taken off on a stretcher with an apparent neck injury.