Brumbies blitz too much for Canes
The Brumbies recorded their second win of the season, when they scored a bonus point 29-21 win over the hapless Hurricanes in Wellington on Friday.
Trailing by 3-13 after half-an-hour, the Brumbies scored 19 unanswered points in a 10-minute blitzkrieg to overtake the home team and eventually hung on to deny the Hurricanes a bonus point.
The Hurricanes' early attack was hampered by a misfiring line-out, yet their forwards made a statement with a tighthead win in the first scrum of the match.
The Brumbies also had their own issues settling in, with scrumhalf Nic White twice kicking the ball out on the full, and lock Sam Carter's head collecting a misdirected pass to blow another early attacking opportunity.
Two Beauden Barrett penalties (in the seventh and 19th minutes), was followed by a Nic White three-pointer just short of the half-hour mark.
A fortuitous try to TJ Perenara shortly afterwards, when the match officials missed what appeared to be a foot in touch, saw the home team race into a 13-3 lead.
However, the Brumbies burst into life with 19 unanswered points.
Five minutes from the break Jesse Mogg produced the perfect show-and-go from a scrum, before Mogg again injected himself into the game – breaking some tackles to get them on the front foot and then throwing a pass way out wide where Robbie Coleman was unmarked.
White kicked one conversion and missed another, as the Brumbies held a slender 15-13 at the half-time break.
Three minutes into the second half that lead stretched to 22-15 – when Tevita Kuridrani snatched the ball thrown flat against the line and hit a gap, spinning over the line.
White added the conversion, before Barrett finally produced an answer (three points) to the Brumbies' rush on the scoreboard – making it 16-22 going into the final quarter.
However, going into the final 10 minutes replacement Locky McCaffrey was put into space after McCabe again broke the line – giving the visitors the bonus point and a 29-16 lead.
The Hurricanes got a late consolation try through No.8 Blade Thomson, but Barrett's conversion attempt was wide – leaving the home team without even a losing bonus point.
Man of the match: Jack Lam did some serious damage at the breakdown for the Hurricanes, but the two most influential players were Brumbies fullback Jesse Mogg – with a try other great bursts of energy – and Pat McCabe, who started the game with a No.22 jersey, after being listed on the replacement bench. McCabe gets out vote, as he constantly injected himself into the game and produced a couple of vital assists – including the bonus-point try.
For the Hurricanes:
Tries: Perenara, Thomson
Pens: Barrett 3
For the Brumbies:
Tries: Mogg, Coleman, Kuridrani, McCaffrey
Cons: White 3
Hurricanes: 15 James Marshall, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Conrad Smith (captain), 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Jack Lam, 6 Adam Hill, 5 Mark Reddish, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 John Schwalger, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Ben Franks.
Replacements: 16 Motu Matu'u, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 19 James Broadhurst, 20 Ardie Savea, 21 Chris Smylie, 22 Alapati Leiua, 23 Marty Banks.
Brumbies: 15 Jesse Mogg, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Andrew Smith, 11 Robbie Coleman, 10 Matt Toomua, 9 Nic White, 8 Ben Mowen, 7 Jarrad Butler, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Leon Power, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Ruan Smith, 18 Jean-Pierre Smith, 19 Jordan Smiler, 20 Locky McCaffrey, 21 Conrad Hoffman, 23 Lionel Cronje, 22 Pat McCabe.
Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Mike Fraser (New Zealand), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)