Brumbies hold on for narrow victory over Rebels

Sun, 18/04/2021, 06:00 am
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
The Brumbies celebrate a try during their round Nine Match with the Rebels. Photo: Getty Images

The Brumbies have held on for a thrilling 26-20 victory over the Rebels at AAMI Park.

Ill-discipline came back to haunt the home side, who were handed two yellow cards in the first half to Marika Koroibete and Trevor Hosea.

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Whilst their defence held strong, two tries late in the half allowed the Brumbies to race away with the commanding lead.

Despite this, the Rebels bounced back through ex-Brumbies Joe Powell and Matt To'ouma, setting up a thrilling finish.

However, the Brumbies would hold on, securing victory as they turn their focus to the Qualifying Final in two weeks time.

Powell gets one over his former team

Needing a win to maintain pace with the Force, the Rebels took an early 7-0 lead when hooker James Hanson burst his way over.

However, the pressure of the Brumbies stifled their attack, unable to stop their rampaging maul.

This lead to a series of penalties, with winger Marika Koroibete sent to the bin after 15 minutes. With a man advantage, the Brumbies turned to their trusty 5m maul, with local product Rory Scott crossing in his first start.

The defending premiers would not relent, continuing to press the Rebels line as the penalties flowed.

It was a case of one man in, one out for the hosts, with lock Trevor Hosea yellow carded as the Rebels gave away nine penalties in the first half.

Once again, the Brumbies would expose the Rebels’ lack of numbers, with Caderyn Neville and Tom Wright crossing before the break to give them a 19-7 lead at the break.

Neville finishes off a cracking team try

With their season on the line, the returning Campbell Magnay provided a spark, bursting through the defence to set up Joe Powell.

A Matt Toomua penalty goal would bring them within two as the faithful AAMI Park crowd looked to get them home.

However, in cruel/comical fashion, their momentum was halted by an erred Toomua clearance kick, collecting Josh Kemeny in the head.

The resulting deflection allowed Bailey Kuenzle to cross in the corner, allowing the Brumbies to race out to a nine-point lead.

With neither team willing to crack, Toomua would take the penalty shot with seven minutes to set up the grandstand finish.

Feeling the effects of their thrilling loss to the Reds last week, the Brumbies seemed to do enough when they were awarded a 79th-minute scrum.

But in classic Super Rugby AU fashion, the game wasn’t over and the Rebels managed to win a scrum penalty as the siren went.

Whilst they continued to attack the Brumbies line, it would be the returning Will Miller that sealed the game, earning the late turnover and causing the mistake to allow the Brumbies to sneak away with the win.

BRUMBIES 26

TRIES: Wright, Scott, Neville, Kuenzle

CONS: Lonergan 2, Lolesio

REBELS 20

TRIES: Hanson, Powell

CONS: To’omua 2

PENS: To’omua 2

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