The talking points: round 14

by staff

The talking points...

An important weekend for the Asteron Life Super Rugby Australian Conference with the Rebels missing the chance to go top before the Waratahs took theirs. The Brumbies snatching the lead straight back in South Africa though with a vital bonus point win over the Lions.

1. The Reds aren’t a spent force in 2015

All but written off after their Crusaders capitulation, the Reds bounced back in emphatic style against the Rebels. Five second half tries led by the brilliance of Liam Gill, Will Genia and James O’Connor, leaving the Rebels’ finals hopes on the brink.

2. Super Sefa fit to be Wallabies hero

One shining light from the Rebels dour trip north was the performance by winger Sefanaia Naivalu. The flyer tore the Reds’ defence to shreds in the first 40, making them look like snails on the five minute mark. The question for Michael Cheika now is, can he do it on the international stage? The Reds’ defence would definitely say so.

3. Taqele the Tank

While Naivalu continues to push his claim, Taqele Naiyaravoro is doing his Wallabies chances no harm in Tah land. The human wrecking ball capped off another barnstorming display with a try against the Sharks. The 23-year old is set to move to Edinburgh at the end of the season but a Wallabies call-up would put an end to that. Watch this space.

4. Matt Toomua’s ankles

The playmaker only just came back from a month out with a right ankle complaint and now an injury to the left ankle has Toomua’s finals chances on a knife edge. The Wallabies star is confident he won’t miss any action though with the conference leaders to enjoy a bye this weekend.

5. Liam Gill’s future

What will he decide? Reports are that the Reds, Rebels and Sevens are all keen to secure the services of the star flanker. Gill says he will decide in the next couple of weeks but one thing is for sure, he is a player well and truly on the rise.