Brumbies get the job done in Tokyo - Green and Gold Rugby
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Brumbies get the job done in Tokyo

Brumbies get the job done in Tokyo

The Brumbies have taken back top place of the Aussie conference with a 42-19 win over the Sunwolves in Tokyo.

The final score didn’t reflect the closeness of the game and they didn’t have it all their own way with a spirited performance from the hosts in their last home game in 2019 making the Brumbies work hard for the win to claim an important bonus point. Connal McInerney bagged a second half hat-trick from the bench in the six tries to three victory with Pete Samu, Irae Simone and Tom Banks the others to get on the try scorers sheet.

The Match

It wasn’t the best start for the Brumbies as the Sunwolves got on the board within the opening minute with a high ball from Samesi Masirewa not collected by the Brumbies and winger Hosea Saumaki stepped his way around Christian Lealiifano and beat Tom Banks to the line.

The Brumbies first foray into the Sunwolves territory was on the back of a penalty and attempted their main weapon but the opposition was more than up to it and even forced a turnover.

But the visitors wouldn’t have to wait too much longer with Pete Samu getting them on the board with a try out wide after being sent on his way by Irae Simone who found space in the defensive line and level the score at 7-7 after ten minutes.

The Brumbies were given another chance to attack off a penalty, something that was giving the Sunwolves come concern, but again the Sunwolves stopped the Brumbies maul although referee Federico Anselmi should have punished some questionable ruck work on their own line.

The Sunwolves pressure on Joe Powell at the back of the ruck was working in their favour and was making the Brumbies really work to retain their own ball at the breakdown. On the 20 minute mark they did manage to crack the line with Simone getting on the sheet and continue his recent run of form as his fend was too good for the Sunwolves defence and he went over for his second try in as many weeks.

The Brumbies scrum was proving too much for the Sunwolves, who had an almost whole new front row from last week, and earned a number of penalties in the opening half. From one advantage Lealiifano chipped it over the rushing defence to Henry Speight on the wing and he found Tevita Kuridrani who in turn found Banks to finish off a well worked try.

The Sunwolves were next on the board with a special try from Masirewa where it looked like nothing was on when they had a penalty advantage but he hit the gas to leave three Brumbies defenders in his wake to score in the right corner but a bit too far out for Hayden Parker to convert to make at 21-12 at the break.

Embed from Getty Images

The Brumbies rung a few changes in the second half with Henry Speight going with an injury and replaced by Tom Wright and Folau Fainga’a replaced by Connal McInereny and it was McInerney who took the role of Fainga’a on the back of the rolling maul to score the fourth try for the Brumbies.

But the Sunwolves hit back right away and it was Masirewa again who cut the Brumbies defence to shreds and he found Jamie Booth to keep his side in touch and make the Brumbies a little nervous at 28-19.

The Brumbies needed to be more patient with the ball and when they were they tired the Sunwolves defence with 12 phases and another penalty that resulted in another try to McInerney to show Fainga’a he could also do the business from five metres out, with the backs getting involved again.

As the game wound down, the Brumbies rung the changes with the temperature well above when they left Canberra. McInerney must have been frustrated watching Fainga’a roll over 10 tries so far this season and then showed he too could bag a hat-trick to put the Brumbies in bonus point territory. Lealiifano’s 100% kicking continued with his sixth conversion of the day to make it 42-19 and they closed it out for the win.

The Brumbies head home to prepare for an important game against the Waratahs in Sydney next Saturday and a chance to sew up the Aussie conference.


The Game Changer

The Sunwolves were never too far behind but the Brumbies kicked away around the 60 minute mark and took control of the match and close it out.

The G&GR MOTM

Christian Lealiifano – His composure around the game and popping up in key defensive positions was crucial to the win as was his six conversions.

Wallaby Watch

Pete Samu scored one try and the breakdown was a busy game with a lot going on. Tevita Kuridrani had a quiet game compared to last week but had good involvements, including the try for Tom Banks. James Slipper, Rory Arnold and Allan Alaalatoa were part of a dominant scrum that won a number of penalties.


The Details

Score & Scorers

BRUMBIES 42
Tries: McInerney 3, Samu, Simone, Banks
Conversions: Lealiifano 6
SUNWOLVES 19
Tries: Saumaki, Masirewa, Booth
Conversions: Parker 2

Cards

Nil

  • Custard Taht

    Great result for the Brumbies, and Lilo for Wallabies 10, actualky a large number of Brumbies for the Wallabies.

    Next week will be a trip up game for the Brumbies. Hopefully the Brumbies back up better from the some what opposed training run then the Rebels.

    • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

      Powell and Lilo have to start for the Wallabies (unless White signs, in which case he starts.

      • Custard Taht

        Certainly worth getting a look at white. My concern is there is a history of players tearing it up in Europe, only to be decidedly avergage upon return.

        If Cheika does select on form and combinations, and goes with a Brumbies tinge, can he get and make the best use of them.

        • ‘If Cheika does select on form and combinations, and goes with a Brumbies tinge, can he get and make the best use of them.’

          Narrator: ‘He won’t’.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          Hmm, I’m not sure there is such a history of that. Beale was tearing it up in Europe, and was fantastic for the first 10 or so months after he came back.

          White was, in my opinion, the best 9 in Australia before he left (Genia was out of form). In Europe he has gone from strength to strength. Continued to build as a player. Still has the best pass of any 9 in Aus, and is the best running 9, and has that big boot that can kick long range goals.

          I’d be very surprised, as much as I like Powell, if Powell is his equal. White plays for one of the best clubs in the NH, and is probably the best 9 in the English Prem. Not as flashy as Faf, but more complete.

          Nick Bishop wrote a good article on White on the other site: https://www.theroar.com.au/2018/12/19/why-rugby-australia-should-listen-to-bob-dwyer-and-dump-the-giteau-law/

  • Steve

    Well done the ponies – wasn’t the most convincing performance (maybe they had one eye on next week) but they took the biscuits.

    I will say that the ref never really seemed to control the game… Multiple knock ons missed, allowing players to lie in the ruck… At one point someone reached through the ruck and slapped the ball out of Powell’s hands. So kudos to the Brums for pushing on and getting the result.

    Next week should be a cracker.

    • Brumby Runner

      Yeah, another poor to abysmal refereeing display.

  • Brumby Runner

    9 points in front of the Tahs who have a poor win/loss record. 5 points in front of the Rebels who have to play the Crusaders and Chiefs (and weren’t they both impressive in the later game?). Could still be displaced at the top but very highly unlikely.

    Go Brumbies – you good things.

    • Geoffro

      Yeah,it was warm in Tokyo then watched Chiefs and Crusaders in steamy Suva …just wow , unbelievable game and skills.Going on that the Rebs are no hope whatsoever.

    • Huw Tindall

      The conference is certainly the Brums to lose! Look like a really well organised team at the moment. Making good decisions 9 times out of 10. Tahs next week will be a cracker as both teams seem to lift for these occasions and some Wallaby jerseys on the line to boot.

  • Pedro

    I thought Simone looked had his best game since his NRC debut season, a great long term prospect. Although he did have an awful missed tackle letting Masirewa in for his try.

ACT Brumbies
@steve_l15

Canberra born and bred Rugby fan brought up on Canberra Kookaburra and ACT Brumbies Rugby.

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