Having won the last two Super Rugby grand finals, the defending champions Chiefs are not prepared to end their 2014 run just yet.
Head coach Dave Rennie said they were emotional to be part of the playoffs as it would have been disappointing to follow two grand final victories with a failure to reach the knockout phase.
The Chiefs will have to win three knockout matches away from home in the next three weeks if they are to defend their title.
The Chiefs have had a poor record against Australian teams this season, losing to the Force, Brumbies and Waratahs while they only managed to score one try in beating the bottom‑placed Rebels 22-16 in Hamilton after returning from South Africa.
The Brumbies will host the Chiefs at 9.40pm this Saturday in the first playoff match while the Sharks play the Highlanders at 3.05am on Sunday in the second playoff match.