Queensland Reds

The One That Got Away: Reds vs Hurricanes

The One That Got Away: Reds vs Hurricanes

It will go down in the history books as reasonably heavy defeat but the Reds will know that this was one big scalp that got away.

The Match

The Reds were up for this one, you could just tell.  The ‘Canes were too, don’t get me wrong but this is nothing new from the lads from Wellington. It was undeniable though, there was something different in the home team.  They looked focused, they looked hungry, hell they looked ready for once.  So by the end of the first minute as I watched Barrett slot his first 3 pointer for the night after the Reds had given away two penalties in a row, I felt that all too familiar sinking feeling creeping in.

Thankfully though, it was fleeting.  Apart from the first minute, the opening 20 was all the Reds. They out enthused, out muscled and out scored their much fancied opposition 12 points to 3.  The damage was done thanks to two fantastic tries to Samu Kerevi.  The Reds clearly had a plan and were working to it.

Samu Kerevi scores try Reds v Hurricanes

In the second quarter though, the ‘Canes came back and came back hard.  Ill discipline costing the home side field position and points. Once the Canes gained some momentum there was little the Reds could do to peg them back.  Defensive structures fell away as quick as tacklers fell off ball runners.  The Hurricanes first try came from nothing when Conrad Smith straightened the Canes attack and broke the Reds line. He beat a few defenders and positioned himself well to pop the last pass to Perenara for the try.  It was pretty to watch.  A few minutes later the blindside flanker for the’ Canes, Gibbins, strolled through one of the biggest gaps I’ve seen to grab a try of his own.  The two teams going to half time with the Hurricanes up 20 points to 12.

The second half started in much the same way as the first with Barrett nailing a penalty inside the first minute.  The Reds hit back almost immediately though with an excellent try to Liam Gill. Picking and going from the base of a ruck about 5 metres out from the line he hit and spun his way through the defence and slammed the ball down under the sticks.  O’Connor slotting the extras, the Reds were trailing 19-23.  Game on.

Liam Gill tackles James MarshallReds v Hurricanes

The Reds were building back into the game and on nearly every venture into the ‘Canes 22 they were coming away with points. So when they were awarded a penalty about 45 out and opted to kick for the corner it seemed an excellent opportunity to maybe grab the lead.  Lachie Turner over cooked his kick though and sent the ball touch in goal.  Soon the Reds found themselves defending their own line and eventually Liam Gill was given a yellow card for a cynical infringement.  In the time he was off the field, the visitors scored 2 more tries through Julian Savea and a second to TJ Perenara which gave the cues for the fat lady to start warming up.

The Reds rallied hard but couldn’t manage to come back and at full time the Hurricanes took the match 35 – 19.

Reds v Hurricanes James Marshall

The Game Changer

It was a no brainer for me.  At a time when the Reds were building into the game and looking good to take the lead, Lachie Turner’s penalty kick for touch that went dead in goal was probably it.  The Reds quickly found themselves backpedaling at the other end of the field, the lost a player to the bin and then conceded two tries.  Game over.


There were a few contenders for mine, but  I really liked Ardie Savea’s game tonight.  He stole plenty of ball at the breakdown, was effective at slowing down the Reds ball and tackled exceptionally well.  He also had a few good runs and his linking and support play in the open was good.

Wallaby watch

As I wrote after the Reds vs the Lions game, Samu Kerevi is the real deal.  He shouldn’t feature in the Wallabies squad any time soon as he still has a bit to work on but he’s a Wallaby in the making if ever I’ve seen one.

Also, his last Wallaby cap came in 2007, one of the Reds worst seasons in recent history, so with the Reds now having another shocker in 2015, I think the time is right for Greg Holmes to suit up in Gold again.

The Details


Score & Scorers

Reds: 19

Tries: 3 (Kerevi 2, Gill)
Conversions: O’Connor (2/3)
Penalties: Nil

Hurricanes: 35

Tries: 4 (Perenara 2, Gibbins, J Savea)
Conversions: Barrett (3/4)
Penalties: Barrett (3/5)

Cards & citings

Hurricanes: None

Reds: Gill (’56-’67)

Queensland Reds

I love the Reds and I love the second row. That probably tells you all you need to know about me. I can often be found engaged in pointless arguments in the GaGR forums as 'Scoey".

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