A week after the Super Rugby season began with a whimper, the competition exploded into southern hemisphere rugby fans' consciousness with high-paced, intense encounters that also produced two upsets.
The annual franchise-based competition began last week with just two matches between Australian teams due to the tour of the British and Irish Lions tour in June, with few outside of the Sunburnt Country taking notice of the results.
With South African and New Zealand sides starting the competition on Friday, many considered the weekend's games to be the true start of the campaign and few would have been disappointed.
The competition's debutantes the Southern Kings produced the upset of the round with a 22-10 victory over the Western Force, though their players were far from over excited with the win against the side likely to finish last, believing it was only one step to ensuring their future in the competition.
The Kings were admitted to the competition at the expense of the Johannesburg-based Lions, who have the opportunity to re-join Super Rugby in 2014 with a promotion-relegation clash with the bottom-placed South African side at the end of the season.
"We must keep our feet on the ground, it is only our first step into this competition," Kings centre Andries Strauss said.
"There is still big pressure on us but I hope we can take the momentum from this win further into the competition."
The Kings, however, will not be able to build any momentum for another two weeks, as they have the bye next week along with the table-topping ACT Brumbies and the Otago Highlanders.
John Kirwan's Auckland Blues also provided the other upset of the round when they beat the Wellington Hurricanes, a side that was the most settled of the New Zealand franchises having retained 24 players from last year's squad.
The Hurricanes, who were given the benefit of a penalty try and the sinbinning of Auckland winger Frank Halai, were error ridden, though, and lacked continuity and penetrative attacking thrust.
The 34-20 victory by the Blues, will also serve as a fillip for Kirwan, who swept a broom through the team's playing stocks and expected his young team to show their fans they would be competitive and improve each week.
They face the seven-times champion Canterbury Crusaders next week at Eden Park, with that match expected to be a much tougher test of their progress under Kirwan.
The champion Waikato Chiefs also withstood a furious Otago Highlanders assault to take a 41-27 victory that was sealed on the back of two long-range tries by centre Tim Nanai-Williams, who was suffering from a stomach bug earlier on Friday.
The Chiefs will play their first home game next Saturday against the Cheetahs, who were unlucky to lose to the Sharks at home and now face a four-week road trip.
The Sharks, who were able to slow the pace of the game down against a Cheetahs side well known for helter-skelter rugby, will host a wounded Stormers team, who had been pre-tournament favourites for the South African conference.
The Cape Town-based Stormers, however, were kicked off the park by Morne Steyn as he guided the Bulls to a 25-17 victory and will need to improve their discipline and set-piece against the Sharks.
The focus may have been on code-swapping Israel Folau ahead of the New South Wales Waratahs derby against the Queensland Reds, and while the former rugby league international scored a try, the Waratahs were too loose with the ball in the 25-17 loss.
Michael Cheika's side should be able to rectify that against a Melbourne Rebels team who were hammered 30-13 by the Brumbies on Friday and still appear too loose in the forwards to threaten the more disciplined sides in the competition.
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