SIMON BORCHARDT reports on the Brumbies’ 37-6 thrashing of the Rebels in Canberra.
The Rebels made history last week when they won two consecutive Super Rugby matches at home for the first time, but they remain as rubbish as ever when they’re on the road. The Brumbies had this forgettable game wrapped up by half-time and move back into the top three of the combined standings as Australia’s conference leaders.
The hosts capitalised on the 65% of the possession and territory they enjoyed in the first half to score four tries.
The first came from a scrum on the Rebels’ 22 with midfielder Pat McCabe breaking through a poor tackle from James O’Connor. The Brumbies then opted to put a kickable penalty into touch, won the lineout and flanker Michael Hooper burst away from the maul to score. A minute later, lock Scott Fardy crashed over for his first Super Rugby try.
Things went from bad to worse for the Rebels when captain Gareth Delve was yellow carded on the half-hour mark for a professional foul in the red zone. The Brumbies opted for a scrum and a few phases later No 8 Fotu Auelua appeared to place the ball over the line, only for the TMO to rule that it had been knocked on. It didn’t make much difference, though, as the hosts claimed the bonus-point try soon after through second rower Sam Carter.
The Rebels had 66% of the ball in the third quarter of the match, but couldn’t do anything with it, and the Brumbies extended their lead with 15 minutes to go when Fardy scored his second try.