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Brumbies hold on for narrow victory over Rebels

April 18, 2021 4:00 pm
Fiji born Marika Koroibete on attack for the Rebels [Source: Melbourne Rebels]

Fiji born Marika Koroibete could not help his Rebels side win as they went down fighting 20-26 to Brumbies at AAMI Park.

Koroibete was handed two yellow cards as ill discipline came back to haunt the home side.

Trevor Hosea was also handed two yellow cards.

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Whilst their defence held strong, two tries late in the half allowed the Brumbies to race away with the commanding lead.

Despite this, the Rebels bounced back through ex-Brumbies Joe Powell and Matt To’ouma, setting up a thrilling finish.

However, the Brumbies would hold on, securing victory as they turn their focus to the Qualifying Final in two weeks time.

Needing a win to maintain pace with the Force, the Rebels took an early 7-0 lead when hooker James Hanson burst his way over.

However, the pressure of the Brumbies stifled their attack, unable to stop their rampaging maul.

This lead to a series of penalties, with winger Marika Koroibete sent to the bin after 15 minutes. With a man advantage, the Brumbies turned to their trusty 5m maul, with local product Rory Scott crossing in his first start.

The defending premiers would not relent, continuing to press the Rebels line as the penalties flowed.

It was a case of one man in, one out for the hosts, with lock Trevor Hosea yellow carded as the Rebels gave away nine penalties in the first half.

Once again, the Brumbies would expose the Rebels’ lack of numbers, with Caderyn Neville and Tom Wright crossing before the break to give them a 19-7 lead at the break.

With their season on the line, the returning Campbell Magnay provided a spark, bursting through the defence to set up Joe Powell.

A Matt Toomua penalty goal would bring them within two as the faithful AAMI Park crowd looked to get them home.

However, in cruel/comical fashion, their momentum was halted by an erred Toomua clearance kick, collecting Josh Kemeny in the head.

The resulting deflection allowed Bailey Kuenzle to cross in the corner, allowing the Brumbies to race out to a nine-point lead.

With neither team willing to crack, Toomua would take the penalty shot with seven minutes to set up the grandstand finish.

Feeling the effects of their thrilling loss to the Reds last week, the Brumbies seemed to do enough when they were awarded a 79th-minute scrum.

But in classic Super Rugby AU fashion, the game wasn’t over and the Rebels managed to win a scrum penalty as the siren went.

Whilst they continued to attack the Brumbies line, it would be the returning Will Miller that sealed the game, earning the late turnover and causing the mistake to allow the Brumbies to sneak away with the win.

BRUMBIES 26

TRIES: Wright, Scott, Neville, Kuenzle

CONS: Lonergan 2, Lolesio

REBELS 20

TRIES: Hanson, Powell

CONS: To’omua 2

PENS: To’omua 2

[Source: Rugby.com.au]

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