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Super Rugby | Sydney
09:40 (GMT) | 16-04-2016
  • 80
Fulltime, thank you for joining us at for this match. Be sure to join us for the last two games later today. Until then!, Rugby365 OUT!
  • 79
Roach finds his jumper, Hooper plays Foley who plays Lucas. Folau has a go but is taken well by Tomane, Ryan then coughs up the ball and the ref calls full time!
  • 78
Waratahs attacking from deep through Folau followed by Kellerway. Waratahs awarded another penalty , Foley will set up a lineout and one last chance at snatching the game .
  • 77
Waratahs set up the lineout in the Brumbies 22, Roach finds his man and the Tahs attack through Foley and Beale. They win another penalty and Foley will have a shot at goal. He strikes it well and adds the three points. 6 point game here!
  • 76
Penalty to the Waratahs again and this time Butler is given a yellow card for numerous infringements
  • 75
Penalty to the Waratahs as Kuridrani high tackles Folau. Foley sets up a lineout. Waratahs have to strike now if they are going to win this match.
  • 74
Brumbies set up a lineout in Waratahs territory . Mann-Rae finds his man and the rolling maul is set before Tomane gets his hands on the ball but fumbles the ball into touch. Ref has judged it came off Foley so the Brumbies get the lineout throw.
  • 73
Yellow card given to Palu for the Waratahs. That may be the final nail in the coffin for the home side.
  • 72
A mess at the lineout from Mann-Rae results in the Waratahs getting a lineout of their own. Roach finds his man , Foley clears the ball to Toua who gets smashed . Brumbies win the penalty for Palu going off his feet at the ruck. TMO in action to judge whether it is worthy of a yellow card as it appears there were no arms used.
  • 71
Tomane makes another good run but throws a dodgy offload that rolls into touch. Waratahs take it quickly and Kellaway clears the ball into touch. Time running out for the Waratahs.
  • 69
Brumbies set up the lineout, Mann Rae finds his jumper and Kuridrani bashes it up in the midfield.
  • 68
Waratahs scrum on the halfway line. They attack through Dennis who makes a good run. Followed by Folau who makes a break but puts in a horrible kick , luckily the Waratahs regain possession before being penalized for holding onto the ball. Great play by Brumbies hooker Josh Mann-Rae
  • 66
Roach with a terrible lineout throw misses everybody and the Brumbies regain possession and Kuridrani clears the ball up field. Waratahs win the penalty for Sam Carter not rolling away. Foley sets up another lineout
  • 65
Maul set again from the Waratahs . Lucas then plays Foley who plays Folau and the Waratahs lose the ball again . Cubelli then kicks the ball out on the full and the Waratahs are given a lifeline
  • 64
Roach finds his jumper in Palu and the Maul is set. Phipps then has a run but loses the ball but the ref awards the Tahs another penalty. Foley sets up a 5 meter lineout.
  • 63
Waratahs attack wide through Reece Robinson who puts in a grubber kick but is taken out after kicking the ball. Another penalty for the Waratahs. Foley sets up a lineout 10 meters from the try line.
  • 62
Tahs win the penalty, Foley sets up a lineout deep in Brumbies territory. Roach finds Hooper who has a run followed by Beale . Solid defence by the Brumbies push the Waratahs back in attack.
  • 60
Scrum collapses at the first attempt, ref calls for a reset. At the second attempt Phipps feeds, plays Foley who throws the dummy and has a go. A hack kick is put through by Kuridrani pushing the Tahs back once again.
  • 59
Foley clears the ball that bounces out on the Brumbies 22. Moore finds his man and the Brumbies attack through Butler who is held up and the Tahs are awarded the scrum deep inside the Brumbies 22. Good attacking position
  • 57
Foley clears the ball but doesn't find touch so Tomane has a run from deep followed by Coleman who puts in a dodgy kick regathered by Foley . Waratahs back on the attack.
  • 55
Brumbies awarded another penalty and opt to scrum 5 meters from the Tahs line. The ref calls use it or lose it but the number 8 Smiler refuses to listen and the ref blows for a Waratahs scrum. Strange call from the ref.
  • 54
Brumbies force the penalty and again refuse to have a shot at goal, instead Toomua sets up an attacking lineout once again inside the Tahs 22.
  • 52
Moore finds Butler who plays Cubelli who finds Lealiifano who is shut down. Cubelli then clears the ball and Holloway cleans up for the Tahs.
  • 51
Nick Phipps puts the ball out on the full and the Brumbies have a lineout on the halfway line
  • 49
Lealiifano adds the extras
  • 48
Maul is set again from the Brumbies , they attack wide through Toua who floats a lovely ball to Tomane who scores!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hattrick Hero!
  • 47
Brumbies with ball in hand as Kuridrani puts on a fend on Folau. Referee awards the Brumbies a penalty and the Brumbies opt to kick for touch for a lineout 5 meters from the Tahs try line
  • 46
Brumbies destroy the Waratahs scrum and force the penalty. Toomua will put the ball into touch to set up a Brumbies lineout.
  • 45
Roach finds his jumper and the Waratahs attack wide through Kellaway followed by a knock on by Carraro. Brumbies are awarded the scrum put in .
  • 44
Foley clears the ball and is taken out by Brumbies lock Arnold. What a collision. Referee awards the Tahs a penalty for the late tackle. Foley sets up another lineout this time on the Brumbies 22.
  • 43
Waratahs win the penalty as Sam Carter is penalized for diving on a player who was already on the ground. Foley clears the ball into touch for a Tahs lineout
  • 42
Lineout to the Waratahs 10 meters from their own line. Roach finds his jumper in Holloway and Foley clears the ball into touch. Brumbies lineout on the ten meter line in the Waratahs half
  • 41
Second half underway. Toomua kicks off for the Brumbies

Half Time

  • 40
Ball kicked into touch as the ref blows for halftime. See you all in a bit for the second half.
  • 38
Beale floats a lovely ball to Carraro who coughs up the ball with the try line in sight. Brumbies scrum inside their own 22.
  • 37
Waratahs on the attack inside the Brumbies 22. This match has heated up!
  • 35
Lealiifano adds the extras
  • 34
Brumbies set up the maul and Stephen Moore crashes over for the try! A real arm wrestle here!
  • 33
Skelton has a run before losing the ball and the Brumbies have a prime attacking position inside the Waratahs 22. Ref blows for a Brumbies penalty for Hooper going off his feet at the ruck. Lealiifano sets up a 5 meter attacking lineout.
  • 32
Foley adds the extras
  • 31
Scrum time for the Waratahs . Holloway has a run, followed by Beale who does well and offloads to Kellerway who breaks the line and plays in Folau for the TRYYYYYYY!!!
  • 28
Waratahs win the penalty and Foley has a shot at goal that sails through the middle.
  • 26
Short arm penalty awarded to the Waratahs for pushing early. They opt to tap and go and attack through Carraro followed by Holloway who loses the ball and the Brumbies clear the ball into touch . Quick lineout by Folau.
  • 24
Couple of knock on's from both teams but the ref judges it to be a Brumbies scrum on the halfway line
  • 22
Foley adds the extras
  • 20
From the scrum Lealiifano clears the ball up field and Foley has a run followed by Skelton. The next phase of attack sees Holloway break the line and play Reece Robinson in for the try! Great play from the TAHS!
  • 19
Dean Mumm coughs up the ball for the Waratahs , a coach killer. Scrum Brumbies near their own 22
  • 18
Brumbies steal the ball at the lineout and Cubelli clears the ball to Carraro who plays Beale who tries to find some spark for the Tahs. Bigman Tom Robertson breaks the line for the Tahs with a lovely run of 20 meters. Great run by the prop!
  • 17
Lineout to the Waratahs as Lealiifano clears the ball into touch
  • 14
Lealiifano fails to convert the try
  • 13
Foley puts through a kick cleaned up by Toua and the Brumbies have possession and counter attack from deep as Lealiifano plays Toomua who plays Tomane who runs the distance of the field and scores!!!!!!!!! What a finisher
  • 12
Knock on from a Brumbies hand. Waratahs awarded a scrum just inside the Brumbies half. Phipps feeds the scrum and then plays Foley who launches the Gary Owen, the up and under but Toua does well cleaning up the ball with Beale as his competition in the air
  • 11
Waratahs have possession as Roach has a run followed by Beale , then Kellaway. Brumbies defending well
  • 10
Slow start to this match, too many kicks
  • 9
Knock on by Ben Robinson , scrum to the Brumbies inside the Waratahs half
  • 8
Brumbies in possession on the halfway line before Cubelli clears the ball and Kellaway does well under the high ball. Foley then clears the ball upfield and Toua has a go from deep.
  • 7
Lealiifano adds the extras and big news for the Waratahs as Folau makes his way back onto the field
  • 6
Brumbies steal the ball at the lineout and attack wide , for the second phase the ball is played to Toua who does well, plays Tomane who steps Phipps and scores the try! Great play!
  • 5
Cubelli feeds the scrum , plays Toomua who plays Tomane who does well. He attempts a chip and chases but the ball is rolls into touch.
  • 4
Scrum to the Brumbies inside the Waratahs half, at the first attempt the front row collapses and the ref calls for a reset.
  • 2
Brumbies take the ball well and Butler has a run followed by Toua who clears the ball upfield to Folau who gets smashed and has to leave the field for a concussion test. Waratahs are awarded the penalty and Foley will have a shot at goal. He lines up his kick , strikes it well but the ball is pulled to the right hand side of the sticks. 22 dropout Brumbies
  • 1
First half underway! Foley kicks off for the Waratahs
  • -5
Almost time for kick off, teams will be going through their last match preparations
  • -15
The Brumbies are coming off a 23-48 loss to the Chiefs two weeks ago.
  • -20
After forcing their way to the semifinals in 2015 - after a stellar season which saw them accrue 52 competition points, the third most of any team - the Waratahs have started their 2016 campaign disappointingly slow.
  • -25
Welcome to this Super Rugby clash between the Waratahs and Brumbies
Mc waratahs logo 80x50
Mc brumbies logo 80x50
  • 1 Benn Robinson
  • 2 Hugh Roach
  • 3 Tom Robertson
  • 4 Dean Mumm
  • 5 Will Skelton
  • 6 Jack Dempsey
  • 7 Michael Hooper
  • 8 Jed Holloway
  • 9 Nick Phipps
  • 10 Bernard Foley
  • 11 Matt Carraro
  • 12 Kurtley Beale
  • 13 Israel Folau
  • 14 Reece Robinson
  • 15 Andrew Kellaway
  • 16 James Hilterbrand
  • 17 Paddy Ryan
  • 18 Angus Taavao-Matau
  • 19 Sam Lousi
  • 20 Wycliff Palu
  • 21 Dave Dennis
  • 22 Matt Lucas
  • 23 David Horwitz
  • 1 Scott Sio
  • 2 Stephen Moore
  • 3 Ben Alexander
  • 4 Rory Arnold
  • 5 Sam Carter
  • 6 Scott Fardy
  • 7 Jarrad Butler
  • 8 Jordan Smiler
  • 9 Tomas Cubelli
  • 10 Christian Lealiifano
  • 11 Joe Tomane
  • 12 Matt Toomua
  • 13 Tevita Kuridrani
  • 14 Robbie Coleman
  • 15 Aidan Toua
  • 16 Josh Mann-Rae
  • 17 Allan Alaalatoa
  • 18 Les Makin
  • 19 Tom Staniforth
  • 20 Michael Wells
  • 21 Joe Powell
  • 22 James Dargaville
  • 23 Nigel Ah Wong
Mc article ackermann v fleck 800


Thu, 14 Apr 2016 21:25

IN THE SPOTLIGHT. Jan de Koning looks at the Saturday matches in Part Two of Super Rugby's Round Eight.

Allister Coetzee's appointment as the new Springbok coach has certainly added spice to Saturday's Super Rugby showdown between South African glamour sides the Stormers and the Lions.

The two African conference leaders - Stormers in Africa One and the Lions in Africa Two - will battle it out at Ellis Park in what could be a thrilling finale to a gripping weekend of Super Rugby.

It is already being billed as a Springbok trial, with Coetzee set to take a keen interest in the first weekend since his appointment (done some weeks ago) was made public.

A week ago, the Stormers and Lions knew they were battling for South African supremacy as the leading sides in the two Africa conferences.

Now they have the added pressure of impressing the new Bok coach, who has laid out his blueprint for reviving South Africa's fortunes and needs the backing of the Super Rugby franchises.

With Coetzee preaching an attacking philosophy - and with only seven weeks before their first Test against Ireland - the game will offer him a glimpse of the Stormers' famed defence against the Lions' exciting attack.

"It is great to see that all coaches at Super Rugby level have this awareness that we need to brush up on our attack," he said, while adding that did not mean an end to South Africa's trademark physical game.

The Stormers, with five wins from six games, remain strong defensively - having leaked only eight tries this year compared to 18 by the Lions, who are four from six.

Attacking statistics favour the Lions, who have scored 21 tries to 17 by the Stormers.

The day's action starts when the Sharks, beaten at home in the past two weeks by the Crusaders and Lions, head to New Zealand to face the Blues - who put on a much improved display last weekend when they went close to upsetting the Chiefs.

Next we have the Brumbies, fresh off a bye and a thrashing by the Chiefs the week before that, facing the Waratahs in Sydney.

The Bulls, second to the Stormers in the Africa One conference, are at home to the Reds - who knocked over defending champions the Highlanders last weekend for their first win of the season.

The Chiefs, Force, Highlanders and Southern Kings have byes this weekend.

We look at the Saturday, April 16, matches below!

The Blues have turned back the clock 20 years in the hope of getting their campaign back on track.

They are stuck outside the top 10, with just one win and a draw in their last five matches.

Captain James Parsons spoke of how the original Blues team, that beat the Sharks (then still Natal) in the inaugural Super 12 Final, has inspired a new generation of Blues players - especially in the lead-up to this week's Blues versus Sharks encounter.

"A lot of our franchise is built around those 1996 and 1997 seasons," Parsons said of the back-to-back Super Rugby victories.

"It is something we strive towards.

"If we can go half as good as those blokes, we can go deep into the competition," he said.

Sharks coach Gary Gold sees the match-up as ideal for his side to unleash their attacking credentials, in a season where they - just like the Blues - showed early promise before losing their way.

The Sharks, who are in 10th place on the standings just one above the Blues, have a draw and two defeats in their last three matches.

"When we have possession, it's for us to make the very best of it, to build the phases and put them under pressure," Gold said.

"One thing about the New Zealand teams is that they don't want to come out and defend, they prefer being on the attack."

"It's vital for us it to try get some parity at scrum time," the Sharks mentor said, adding: "It's really important from that point of view to give ourselves enough opportunity to be able to launch attacks against them.

"We need to be a lot neater and accurate at set-piece time, we need to get a lot more set-piece ball.

"And we've spoken long and hard about our discipline, we can't give penalties away.

"The Blues have some massive ball carriers up front, a good set-piece and some electric backs who are renowned steppers who use the width of the field very well.

"They will pose a massive challenge for us and we'll have to have our wits about us to be able to deal with their attacking game."

"The players are upbeat and are excited as well as optimistic about this three-week tour.

"We are confident that we will tour well and hoping we can really surprise a few people with some improved performances."
Recent results:
2014: Sharks won 29-23, Albany
2013: Sharks won 22-20, Durban
2012: Sharks won 29-23, Auckland
2011: Sharks won 26-12, Durban
2010: Sharks won 23-10, Durban
2009: Sharks won 35-31, Auckland

Prediction: The Sharks have won their last 10 matches against the Blues, though six of those 10 wins have been by seven points or fewer. The Sharks are undefeated in their last four matches away from home in Super Rugby. However, the Sharks have lost on each their last three trips to New Zealand with two of those defeats coming by more than 30 points. The Blues have averaged 17 minutes and 54 seconds in possession of the ball so far this season, the most of any team and over four minutes more than the Sharks (13:51). The Sharks have conceded just two second-half tries this season, three fewer than any other team. This is tough to call, as it is literally a case of who wants it most. We think the Blues will sneak this by five or sevens points - with a late score.


Blues: 15 Lolagi Visinia, 14 Rieko Ioane, 13 Rene Ranger, 12 Piers Francis, 11 Tevita Li, 10 Ihaia West, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Steven Luatua, 7 Tanerau Latimer/Kara Pryor, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Josh Bekhuis, 4 Hoani Matenga, 3 Charlie Faumuina, 2 James Parsons (captain), 1 Sam Prattley.
Replacements: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Namatahi Waa, 18 Ofa Tu'ungafasi, 19 Kara Pryor/Joe Edwards, 20 Akira Ioane, 21 Billy Guyton, 22 Matt McGahan, 23 George Moala.

Sharks: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 JP Pietersen, 13 Paul Jordaan, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Lwazi Mvovo, 10 Joe Pietersen, 9 Cobus Reinach, 8 Philip van der Walt, 7 Jean-Luc du Preez, 6 Daniel du Preez, 5 Stephan Lewies, 4 Etienne Oosthuizen, 3 Lourens Adriaanse, 2 Franco Marais, 1 Tendai Mtawarira (captain).
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Thomas du Toit, 18 Coenie Oosthuizen, 19 Hyron Andrews, 20 Keegan Daniel, 21 Michael Claassens, 22 Garth April, 23 Odwa Ndungane.

Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant referees: Craig Joubert, Paul Williams
TMO: Ben Skeen

After forcing their way to the semifinals in 2015 - after a stellar season which saw them accrue 52 competition points, the third most of any team - the Waratahs have started their 2016 campaign disappointingly slow.

Both of their wins this campaign have been against the Reds and the New South Wales side will be looking to buck a string of tight results when they host the Brumbies.

The Waratahs opened their campaign with a convincing 30-10 win against the Reds on home turf, but have struggled from then on.

They were beaten 15-32 by the Brumbies in the nation's capital in Round Two and have won just one match since. They have struggled so far to impose themselves in the opening halves of games, forcing themselves to chase leads and fall agonisingly short.

This has not gone smoothly for the Brumbies either - having been forced to reorganise their back row, following the two-match suspension of David Pocock and the retirement of Ita Vaea over a life-threatening blood clot condition.

Brumbies prop Scott Sio said the side is confident they can return to form ahead of Saturday's Australian Conference blockbuster.

The Brumbies are coming off a 23-48 loss to the Chiefs two weeks ago.

Despite the defeat Sio says he is looking forward to an intense local derby.

"They'll come out firing this week. They'll be up for it," Sio said in an interview on the Brumbies website.

"They're back at home and they'll be wanting to put on a good show for their crowd.

"It's a big game obviously, but all the games are big for us. From now on, it's just ‘must win' every week so that's the approach we're taking into it."

Another player desperate to overcome a disappointing run in the season is the Waratahs' Wallaby lock Will Skelton. He was instructed by coach Daryl Gibson to go back to club rugby, to regain his fitness and recapture form.

"I had a slow start to the season and I don't think I was efficient enough with my ball carrying, defence and ruck stuff," Skelton told the Sydney Morning Herald.

"I wasn't really using my strengths to my advantage. He [Gibson] thought a week or two in club rugby would freshen me up and hopefully it pays dividends this weekend.

"I didn't see it coming," he said of his axing, adding: "Hopefully this week I can really put my hand up for the team and really lead in that physicality front and be dominant with my carries and defence."

David Pocock will miss the Waratahs clash as part of his three-week suspension and Sio says it will be a chance for some of the other players to shine.

"He's a massive loss for us. One, being a world-class player, but he provides a lot of leadership in what he does," Sio said.

"What that means now is there's an opportunity for a lot of the guys to step up. Jarrad [Butler] has been hard away at his rehab and Wellsy's [Michael Wells] been doing well.

"We've got capable guys to come on and fill that void that he's left."

Recent results:
2016: Brumbies won 32-15, Canberra
2015: Waratahs won 13-10, Canberra
2015: Waratahs won 28-13, Sydney
2014: Waratahs won 26-8, Sydney (semifinal)
2014: Waratahs won 39-8, Sydney
2014: Brumbies won 28-23, Canberra

Prediction: The Waratahs have won four of their last five matches against the Brumbies, though the ACT side snapped that streak with a 32-15 win in their last encounter. The Waratahs have won nine of their last 11 home matches against teams from within Australia, keeping their opponents to eight points or fewer in five of those matches. In the Brumbies' last 12 games, the side leading at half-time has gone on to win each time (excluding one tied game at half-time). The Brumbies have conceded only 14 points in the opening quarter of matches so far this season, only the Stormers (nine) have conceded fewer. Waratahs' Nick Phipps and Brumbies' Tomas Cubelli have each assisted three tries this season, the joint most of any players in the Australian Conference. This will probably not be very pretty, perhaps brutal - given how much is riding on the result. We think the Brumbies will win a close contest - the margin in single digits.


Waratahs: 15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Israel Folau, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Matt Carraro, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Jack Dempsey, 5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Tom Robertson, 2 Hugh Roach, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 James Hilterbrand, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 Angus Ta'avao, 19 Sam Lousi, 20 Wycliff Palu, 21 David Dennis, 22 Matt Lucas, 23 David Horwitz.

Brumbies: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Robbie Coleman, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt Toomua, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Christian Lealiifano (co-captain), 9 Tomás Cubelli 8 Jordan Smiler, 7 Jarrad Butler, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore (co-captain), 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Allan Alaalatoa, 18 Leslie Leulua'iali'i-Makin, 19 Tom Staniforth, 20 Michael Wells, 21 Joe Powell, 22 James Dargaville, 23 Nigel Ah Wong.

Referee: Nick Briant
Assistant referees: Brendon Pickerill, Michael Hogan
TMO: Ian Smith

The Reds have been at the receiving end of a couple of big hidings at Loftus Versfeld and it has been 15 years since the Reds last won in Pretoria.

However, they may find a different animal opposing them this week - a Bulls team in the process of evolving from a one-dimensional bash-it-up side, to a team determined to play an expansive game.

Bulls coach Nollis Marais said despite the Reds' obvious threats - a team playing with good width - they will continue to evolve their own game and not retreat into their shells.

"They knocked over the defending champions last week, so will have faith in their game plan and structures," Marais said, adding: "We need to be ready."

Marais feels that the Reds will pose a different threat to what the team were exposed to in their last two matches.

"Local derbies are just different. It is a more physical match-up with lots of collisions.

"It is no co-incidence that people talk about a typical derby match.

"Playing a team from Australia will present challenges elsewhere to what we were used to and we need to be ready to embrace them."

Reds scrumhalf Nick Frisby said playing the Bulls at Loftus is probably one of the hardest assignments in Super Rugby.

"You can't want to go to Loftus with any doubts in your mind, because they [those doubts] will be exposed," Frisby said.

"It is another good opportunity this week for the team against the Bulls, following last week's win over the Highlanders.

"Just like last week we are coming up against quality opposition."

However, for many in the Reds team this is their first visit to South Africa.

"Youngsters can get caught up in the excitement of coming to South Africa for the first time and playing at Loftus ," he said of the intimidating Pretoria venue.

"Obviously altitude is a factor, but you just have to put that to the back of your mind.

"It is an interesting one for the kickers, especially if you haven't been here before - the ball tends to hang in the air.

"You just have to judge and get used to. Then the back three have to be on their toes, as there will be a lot of high balls and long kicks coming.

"If you play the Bulls you know they will be big and physical, that's their strength. Our forwards must front up and deal with the big boys."

Recent results:
2015: Bulls won 43-22, Pretoria
2013: Reds won 23-18, Brisbane
2012: Bulls won 61-8, Pretoria
2011: Reds won 39-30, Brisbane
2010: Reds won 19-12, Brisbane
2009: Bulls won 33-20, Pretoria

Prediction: The Reds have won three of their last five matches against the Bulls, though the South African side earned victory with a 43-22 win when they last met in Round Nine, 2015. The Bulls have won seven and drawn one of their last nine matches at home in Super Rugby. The Reds have won just two of their last 11 matches away from home, though one of those two wins came in South Africa against the Cheetahs in Round 10, 2015. Samu Kerevi made 164 metres over the gainline in the last round, the most by any player in a Super Rugby match this season. SP Marais made a competition-high six offloads in Round Seven, while it was the second most in a single game this season (George Moala - eight, v Hurricanes). Another tough one to call and rather than sit on the fence we are leaning towards the home team. The Bulls will do well if they win by more than 10 points, so we think it will be by eight points.


Bulls: 15 Sarel Marais, 14 Travis Ismaiel, 13 Jesse Kriel, 12 Jan Serfontein, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Francois Brummer, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Arno Botha, 7 Jannes Kirsten, 6 Pieter Labuschagne, 5 Rudolph Snyman, 4 Jason Jenkins, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Adriaan Strauss (captain), 1 Trevor Nyakane.
Replacements: 16 Jaco Visagie, 17 Lizo Gqoboka, 18 Werner Kruger, 19 Marvin Orie, 20 Deon Stegmann, 21 Piet van Zyl, 22 Tian Schoeman, 23  Dan Kriel.

Reds: 15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Anthony Fainga'a, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Jake McIntyre, 9 Nick Frisby, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Ben Matwijow, 4 Cadeyrn Neville, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 Andrew Ready, 1 James Slipper (captain).
Replacements: 16 Saia Fainga'a, 17 Sef Fa'agase, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Lukhan Tui, 20 Curtis Browning, 21 James Tuttle, 22 Sam Greene, 23 Ayumu Goromaru.

Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant referees: TBC, AJ Jacobs (South Africa)
TMO: Johan Greeff (South Africa)

The two form teams in South Africa go head-to-head in what most pundits see as a 'conference decider'.

Yes, we are only approaching the halfway stage of the league action, but there is no doubt the winner could take a significant psychological advantage into the second half of the season.

The Stormers, currently second on the global standings, head the Africa One conference and is five log points clear of the Lions, the leaders of the Africa Two conference.

Unlike last week - when both came away with comfortable wins - this is set to be desperate battle between two teams with vastly different philosophies.

While the Stormers are trying to change from a defensive-minded culture to a more expansive game, they have long way to go before they are as creative as the Lions.

The difference may well be found at flyhalf. The Stormers have for years relied on a player like Demetri Catrakilis and while Kurt Coleman is somewhat more creative, it was only last week when young Jean-Luc du Plessis started in the No.10 jersey that they had a clear vision of what an expansive game can look like when it comes off.

The Lions, with Elton Jantjies now a fixture at flyhalf, have been patiently evolving their game for the past three years and are finally beginning to reap the rewards.

The question is, in a crunch game - when the pressure is really on - will the Stormers revert to what their instinct tells them?

Lions coach Johan Ackermann believes defence is still the Stormers' most effective tactic.

"Defensively you always have to praise the Stormers," Ackermann said, adding: "They've done well this whole season.

"If you look at points difference on the standings, they have given away less points than anyone."

The Lions mentor admitted there has been a shift in the Cape Town outfit's approach.

"They will take more risks with those x-factor players they have.

"They also have those structures in place that have been there for a number of years.

"Their scrums are strong, the line-outs are strong and they are a good mauling side - as well as defence."

Stormers coach Robbie Fleck said that his team is determined to build on the winning momentum they have gathered so far this season - with five wins in six starts.

"We know that every game is an opportunity to improve on what we have done before, and that is our aim up in Johannesburg," Fleck said.

"We have prepared well for this match and the players are focused on giving their best for 80 minutes this weekend," he added.

The Stormers' Springbok centre Damian de Allende pointed to shutting down Jantjies as the key to stopping the Lions' attack.

"He is a good player and when he gets on the front foot he can be devastating," De Allende said, when quizzed about the Lions' Bok flyhalf.

"Hopefully our loose trio can sort out their rucks and we can slow down their ball a bit - that is where we can expose him.

"It is tough to defend against, especially if they have guys with skills running off him and running short angels.

"It is just about how we manage our defence against that."

Recent results:
2015: Lions and Stormers drew 19-all, Cape Town
2015: Stormers won 22-19, Johannesburg
2014: Stormers won 18-3, Cape Town
2014:  Lions won 34-10, Johannesburg
2012: Stormers won 27-17, Cape Town
2012: Stormers won 24-19, Johannesburg

Prediction: These teams have faced each other 13 times with the Stormers winning on 11 occasions and the Lions just once; the two played out a 19-all draw in their last encounter. The Lions have won six of their last eight matches at home, while they haven't lost a home match to a South African team since they last hosted the Stormers in Round Three, 2015. The Stormers have won their last two matches away from home, although they have lost two of their last three matches away to South African teams. The Lions have scored nine of their tries after gaining possession from a line-out win, the second most of any team in the competition (Brumbies 11). This is a game that will be decided by one incident - a missed tackle, a skew or stolen line-out, a collapsed scrum, a penalty at the breakdown or even a refereeing call. We think the Lions will sneak it with a late score - five points or less.


Lions: 15 Jaco Van Der Walt, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Warren Whiteley (captain), 7 Warwick Tecklenburg, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Julian Redelinghuys, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Dylan Smith.
Replacements: 16 Armand van der Merwe, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Ruan Dreyer, 19 Ruan Ackermann, 20 Cyle Brink, 21 Francois de Klerk, 22 Howard Mnisi, 23 Andries Coetzee.

Stormers: 15 Cheslin Kolbe, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Johnny Kotze, 12 Juan de Jongh (captain), 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Jean-Luc du Plessis, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Schalk Burger, 7 Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 6 Nizaam Carr, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 JD Schickerling, 3 Vincent Koch, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 JC Janse van Rensburg.
Replacements: 16 Mike Willemse, 17 Oliver Kebble, 18 Frans Malherbe, 19 Rynhardt Elstadt, 20 Siya Kolisi, 21 Louis Schreuder, 22 Damian de Allende, 23 Huw Jones.

Referee: Stuart Berry (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Lesego Legoete (South Africa), Cwengile Jadezweni (South Africa)
TMO: Willie Vos (South Africa)

Compiled by Jan de Koning, with additional reporting from AFP

* Statistical information provided by Opta Sports

Mc article joe tomane brumbies v waratahs2 800

Tomane hat-trick ends Brumbies' drought

Sat, 16 Apr 2016 11:35

REPORT: The Brumbies ended a decade-long drought against the Waratahs when they beat them 26-20 in Sydney on Saturday.

The Brumbies have not won a Super Rugby match in Sydney since 2012 and their last win at the Sydney Cricket Ground was in 2002.

It was a Joe Tomane hat-trick and a Steve Moore try from a rolling maul that helped the Brumbies to a crucial win that cemented their place at the top of the Australian conference standings.

The Brumbies were stronger and have left the Waratahs languishing somewhat in their conference - with the Waratahs fourth, which also means second last.

The Brumbies were stronger in the scrums, at the breakdowns and, above all, at mauling, and at half-time they looked a good bet for victory. Indeed they won, but the second half was a fairly dreary, 7-3 affair. The seven came 10 minutes into the half, the three two minutes from the end. The other 28 minutes were fairly desultory.

The man who was the bright start in the match was right wing Joe Tomane with his hat-trick of tries, the second a long-range affair. For two of them he dismissed would-be tacklers with a powerful swerve.

The Brumbies built an early lead with two Tomane tries but the Waratahs came back to take the lead with two exciting tries of their own. But in the end the home side capitulated and settled for a losing bonus point.

Israel Folau was playing at outside centre for this match but inside the first minute was off for a concussion assessment after a clash of heads with Jordan Smiler, whose head was clearly strong enough not to need the test. But Folau came back from the test and galloped over for the Waratahs' second try.

The first scrum was early in the match and then already big divots emerged in the turf. This is not the first Super Rugby ground to suffer from divots but it is  not only ugly but also dangerous for the big men required to scrum.

The Brumbies were first to attack with Tomane charging down the right wing. He chipped and Michael Hooper ran the ball into touch.

The Brumbies went left from the line-out and then went back to Tomane who raced ahead, swerved through Nick Phipps and away from Benn Robinson to score. Christian Leali'ifano converted. 7-0 after 7 minutes.

Folau came back but Benn Robinson was off with a rapidly closing eye and stayed off.

The Waratahs had the ball but Brendan Foley kicked it to Aidan Toua who ran it back. There was some scrambling but Ben Alexander got a pass of sorts to his backs and then Stephen Moore did some clever switching and the Brumbies were running free. Matt Toomua ran down to Matt Carraro, fixed him in place, and gave to Tomane who raced to the goal-line 50 metres away, swerving inside Andrew Kellaway to score. 12-0 after 16 minutes.

Now it was the Waratahs' turn.

Strong No.8, Jed Holloway, broke and gave to Reece Roberts who was unmarked. The right wing, out on the left, juggled but held onto the ball and scored in the corner. Foley converted from afar. 12-7 after 23 minutes.

The Waratahs were back on the attack when Scott Fardy tackled Hooper high and Foley goaled. 12-10 after 28 minutes. (In this match the Brumbies were penalised for two high tackles, two late tackles and an early tackle.)

Holloway was again in action, this time from a scrum  They switched direction and came left where Kurtley Beale slashed through on a break and gave to Kellaway who gave to Folau who strode away from Tomane to score. Again Foley converted. 17-12 to the Waratahs after 33 minutes.

When Hooper was penalised, the Brumbies eschewed a chance to kick at goal and went for a five-metre line-out instead. They mauled and drove over the line where Moore dropped down for the try. Leali'ifano's conversion went over off the upright. 19-17 to the Brumbies, which was the half-time score after the Waratahs had blown a real chance with a poor pass.

In a repeat sequence in the second half, Hooper was penalised, the Brumbies eschewed the kick at goal and went for a line-out. They threw deep and mauled but this time the script changed. They went wide - Tomás Cubelli to Toua to Tomane who scored easily. Leali'ifano converted from touch. 26-17 after 50 minutes. The next score was 28 minutes later.

That was a penalty when Josh Mann-Rae was penalised at a tackle and Foley goaled to get his side within eight points of the victors.

Man of the Match: There were players who caught the eye - Kurtley Beale and Jed Holloway of the Waratahs, Matt Toomua, Scott Fardy and Stephen Moore of the  Brumbies and our man who brightened up an otherwise dull afternoon. - Joe Tomane of the Brumbies.

The scorers:

For the Waratahs:
Tries: R Robinson, Folau
Cons: Foley 2
Pens: Foley 2

For the Brumbies:
Tries: Tomane 3, Moore
Cons: Leali'ifano 3

Yellow cards: Wycliff Palu (Waratahs, 73 - foul play, flying with a shoulder into a ruck), Jarred Butler (Brumbies, 77 - cynical play, hands in the ruck)


Waratahs: 15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Reece Robinson, 13 Israel Folau, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Matt Carraro, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Jack Dempsey, 5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Tom Robertson, 2 Hugh Roach, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 James Hilterbrand, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 Angus Ta'avao, 19 Sam Lousi, 20 Wycliff Palu, 21 David Dennis, 22 Matt Lucas, 23 David Horwitz.

Brumbies: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Robbie Coleman, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Matt Toomua, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Christian Lealiifano (co-captain), 9 Tomás Cubelli 8 Jordan Smiler, 7 Jarrad Butler, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore (co-captain), 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Allan Alaalatoa, 18 Leslie Leulua'iali'i-Makin, 19 Tom Staniforth, 20 Michael Wells, 21 Joe Powell, 22 James Dargaville, 23 Nigel Ah Wong.

Referee: Nick Briant
Assistant referees: Brendon Pickerill, Michael Hogan
TMO: Ian Smith

Reece Robinson (20min) and Israel Folau (31min)
Joe Tomane (6min), Joe Tomane (13min), Stephen Moore (34min), and Joe Tomane (48min)
Bernard Foley (22min) and Bernard Foley (32min)
Christian Lealiifano (7min), Christian Lealiifano (35min), and Christian Lealiifano (49min)
Bernard Foley (28min) and Bernard Foley (77min)
Wycliff Palu (73min)
Jarrad Butler (76min)
VENUE Sydney
REFEREE Nick Briant (New Zealand)