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Sun 2 Aug 2020 | 05:35

Brumbies faith in youngster pays off

Brumbies faith in youngster pays off
Sun 2 Aug 2020 | 05:35
Brumbies faith in youngster pays off
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REACTION: Brumbies captain Allan Alaalatoa was full of praise for his match-winning youngster Mack Hansen.

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Alaalatoa says he never doubted unheralded youngster Mack Hansen would nail the penalty to sink Queensland at the death.

The 22-year-old had missed an easy penalty just 10 minutes earlier at GIO Stadium, but as cool as ice he stepped up to take a far harder kick after the siren had sounded with the game on the line.

About 40m out Hansen kick split the uprights to give the Brumbies the 22-20 win and keep them on top of the table in this year’s Super Rugby AU competition.

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The Brumbies were six points adrift with six minutes to play and somehow clawed their way back into the game with Hansen slotting the winning penalty to take the points.

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Alaalatoa said after the match that they had backed themselves and continued to “play their footy” and when the penalty came Hansen just pointed to the sticks…and nailed it.

“As a player, he’s come a long way this year. For him to have the confidence there to step up and win the game says a lot about himself.”

Brumbies coach Dan McKellar had this to say about the youngster who has only played in five games so far: “He’s [Hansen] a Canberra boy who’s been supporting the Brumbies since he was a toddler.

“He’s not going to get rattled by mistakes. He’s a kid who will back his skill and ability.”

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“He’ll make a mistake or two here and there, that’s him as a footballer, but he backs himself. The pros far outweigh the cons with him.”

This positive result means that the Brumbies are now a game-and-a-half clear at the top of the ladder with the Reds surely kicking themselves for a missed opportunity to record their first win in Canberra since 2014.

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Brumbies faith in youngster pays off | Rugby365