Rebels break SA duck

The Rebels got their first win over South African opposition.

The Rebels got a late penalty try to beat the Stormers in an entertaining match in Melbourne. The Rebels won 30 – 21 after being behind at half time, 13 – 14.

The Stormers will feel hard done by as the Rebels were awarded a penalty try for a player being held back. The TMO rules that a try would have been scored if the player was not held back, and the try was awarded. What the TMO missed though, is that the ball was knocked forward by a Rebel hand, which would rule out a try.

That being said, the Rebels played good attacking rugby and were never completely out of the match. The Stormers score three well worked tries, but only played at full tilt for periods of the match. A few penalties turned down by captain Jean de Villiers could have been the difference at the end of the match.

The Rebels got off to a flyer early in the match, racing to a ten point lead before the Stormers scored twice to take the lead back. A late first half penalty had the Rebels within a point at the break.

The second half saw two early tries by Bekker and Pyle, keeping the scores close, but it was the penalty try and subsequent penalty that took the match away from the Stormers.

The Stormers will be happy to head home after a disastrous tour, but will take some positives out of the match. Having both Andries Bekker and Eben Etzebeth in the second row puts their line-outs miles ahead of any other team. Elton Jantjies also made a positive come back from injury, looking the best he has been all year.

The Stormers head home to face the Reds while the Rebels next host the Waratahs in Melbourne.

Rebels: 30 (13)

Tries: Scott Higginbotham, Hugh Pyle, Penalty Try
Conversions: Jason Woodward (3)
Penalties: Jason Woodward (3)

Stormers: 21 (14)

Tries: Louis Schreuder, Bryan Habana, Andries Bekker
Conversions: Joe Pietersen (3)

By Richard Ferguson