The Brumbies have just about cemented their place in the Super Rugby finals of 2013 following a strong 39-17 win over the Rebels in Canberra.
The win was built on a strong second half display scoring four second half tries in an excellent display of attacking rugby.
The Rebels cause wasn’t helped by having to make a late change on the afternoon of the match with flyhalf Bryce Hegarty failing to recover from a virus and James Hilgendorf stepping in at the last minute.
Even with a host of changes due to Wallabies duties, the Brumbies started the game on fire. With only three minutes on the board, Jesse Mogg launched a long range attacking raid that ultimately saw prop Scott Sio score the opening try.
Concern then fell over the Brumbies (and possibly Wallabies) camp with scrum half Nic White leaving the field with a shoulder injury within the opening ten minutes.
The home side then added to their score with winger Clyde Rathbone collecting a Matt Toomua pass to dive over in the left corner.
The Rebels sparked into action and had the better of the play, stringing phases together but just couldn’t get over the line. They were able to land a penalty goal to Jason Woodward but could easily have had more points.
On one occasion they were almost over the line but Brumbies winger Henry Speight came up with the ball to get the Brumbies out of trouble.
The second half was like a whole different game with both sides prepared to throw the ball around.
A Brumbies penalty goal to Jesse Mogg was countered by a long range try to the Rebels following a Brumbies mistake. Woodward toed the ball ahead and Tom English came up with the ball to dive over under the posts.
At this points the score was 13-10 and it appeared it could be a close match but then the Brumbies exploded with four tries in 20 minutes.
Rathbone collected his second of the night after a magic pass from Matt Toomua and Henry Speight collected the bonus point for the fourth Brumbies try of the night after evading two Rebels tacklers.
Rebels bound Colby Fainga’a ran through the Rebels defence for the Brumbies fifth try with a run that would impress his new employers.
Replacement flyhalf Zack Holmes completed the scoring with his own try and put in a display that would make his new team for 2014, the Western Force, very happy.
The Rebels finally got their hands on the ball and scored their second of the night to Paul Alo-Emile following a series of pick and drives that the Brumbies couldn’t keep out.
The Brumbies tried to add to their score but the job had been done and they ran out 39-17 winners.
Photos courtesy of Tim Anger
The Game Changer
The Rebels try early in the second half sparked the Brumbies into action with four tries in 20 minutes.
The G&GR MOTM
Not many on show with the Wallabies squad players unavailable. Nic White went off after just ten minutes. Luke Burgess played the majority of the second half for the Rebels. Pat McCabe made some solid runs that could see him in Robbie Deans’s plans for the Lions series.
Score &; Scorers
[one_half last=”no”]BRUMBIES: 39
Tries: Sio, Rathbone 2, Speight, C Fainga’a, Holmes
Conversions: Prior 3
[one_half last=”yes”]REBELS: 17
Tries: English, Alo-Emile
Conversions: Woodward 2
Cards & Citings