Kuridrani hat-trick sees Brumbies home over the Bulls - Green and Gold Rugby
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Kuridrani hat-trick sees Brumbies home over the Bulls

Kuridrani hat-trick sees Brumbies home over the Bulls

A hat–trick from Tevita Kuridrani saw the Brumbies come away with a bonus point 22-10 win over the Bulls and cement their spot on top of the Australian conference with three rounds remaining.

A strong defensive effort in the second half held the Bulls to nil despite being under pressure with the visitors enjoying 70% of the ball at one stage in the half with the work at the breakdown from the trio of Pete Samu, Tom Cusack and the unheralded Jahrome Brown instrumental in the win.

The win makes it six in a row at home in 2019 and extends their streak over the Bulls at home to 12 years since their last defeat way back in 2007.

The Match

The game didn’t start too well for the Brumbies as they knocked on and conceded a penalty goal to Manie Libbok after just three minutes but would only have to wait two minutes before they got onto the board with a try to Tevita Kuridrani.

But after that it was all the Bulls as they virtually set up camp inside the Brumbies 22, helped by a series of penalties going their way that eventually referee Jaco Peyper got sick of and sent Tom Cusack to the bin for collapsing the maul.

With a player down in the scrum, the Bulls took full advantage and the ball fell to Hanro Liebenberg who scored, although it could have done with a look at by the TMO.

The much publicised rolling maul from the Brumbies had a few stutters against a strong Bulls defence and came up short three times and when they tried something else, Rory Arnold was penalised for holding onto the ball right near the tryline.

Just before the break, the Brumbies had another attempt at the rolling maul and mixed it up and Kuridrani ran a great line to bag his second of the game, and Lealiifano’s conversion gave them a 12-10 lead at half time.

Embed from Getty Images

The Bulls started the second half well and looked strong but a big turnover from Jahrome Brown in the 22 was kicked downfield by Joe Powell and with no one near him, Manie Libbok knocked on whilst having a look at the oncoming defence.

From the scrum, the Brumbies ran a great first phase move that involved Kuridrani who found Speight on the inside and he set sail for the line and offloaded to Irae Simone for the try to extend the margin to seven points.

There was an important moment around 53 minutes with the Bulls with an attacking scrum after Joe Powell had to force the ball ahead of the fast Rosko Specman but the Brumbies scrum held tight and won a relieving penalty.

Five minutes later, Kuridrani had his hat trick after the pressure was too much for the Bulls out wide as the Brumbies queued up on the left wing to make it 22-10.

The Bulls were their own worst enemies with forward passes in key attacking areas or loose passes on the ground not helping them get any momentum despite 70% of the ball in the second half.

With ten minutes to go. Lealiifano had a chance to put the game to bed but continued his kicking woes to leave it at a 12-point margin at 22-10.

Henry Speight went close to bagging a deserved try but the bounce of the ball evaded him after a Kuridrani grubber kick (is there anything he can’t do).

There was a late flurry of action from the Bulls but they couldn’t add to their score as the Brumbies held on for the bonus point win, 22-10.

The Brumbies are off to Tokyo next week to take on the Sunwolves.

The Game Changer

The Bulls attacking scrum around the 53 minute mark in the Brumbies 22 was penalised in the Brumbies favour and five minutes, Kuridrani had his third try.


Tevita Kuridrani. Scored a hat trick and is showing the benefits of his first preseason in quite some time.

Wallaby Watch

The Brumbies starting front row had a physical game, as it always is against South African opposition. Pete Samu had a busy game in a physical game at the breakdown. Tom Banks didn’t get much a of a chance to stretch out but did set up Kuridrani’s first try.

The Details

Score & Scorers

Tries: Kuridrani 3, Simone
Conversions: Lealiifano
Tries: Liebenberg
Conversions: Libbok
Penalties: Libbok


15 mins – Cusack (Brumbies) – Yellow

  • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

    Good review, Steve.

    Will add that I thought Powell directed the team very well and Simone has his best game ever – kicking for territory, running hard at the line (finally!), supporting, tackling and showing some beautiful passing abilities. Not a perfect game, but showed that he could grow into that triple threat 12 that threatens by running, passing and kicking.

    • Hoss

      Score flattered the Pretorians. Knock-on in their only try and Lilo kicked like my golf game – or as I like to call it ‘whack-fuck’.

      • MST

        With 16 whack-fuck’s off 47 tee-off’s thus far this season it’s a real issue that could cost them if they make the cut for the Championship rounds.

        • Hoss

          Afternoon GAGR Royalty. Yep, he was completely off last night and kicking at a smudge over 66% YTD. I could kick a family pot pie sweeter than Lilo hits the Gilbert at present. That aside, the Ponies were impressive and Samu was awesome.

          What’s your tIp for Poey’s presser Tuesday – no more Games for Ponies and last year in Oz or full retirement due to injury (god I hope not)?

        • joy

          It would save him the ignominy of coming of the bench.

    • Andy

      Simone is looking good. Agree he has all the attributes of a really good 12. Is he hanging around or pissing off as well?

      Tevita looks back to his best. An absolute machine, scary looking.

      And it’s a officially a sham that Pete didn’t get a swag.

    • Keith Butler

      The conference is the Ponies to lose but I can’t see that happening. Very good team performance. On current form it looks like the two K’s at 12 and 13 for the G&G.

      • Custard Taht

        Not with Foley at 10!

        • Keith Butler

          Goes without saying but with Cheika all bets are off.

  • Pedro

    Thanks Steve.

    BIG big win.

    Great effort from the brums, the players really look like they’re playing for each other. Dangerous for other teams.

  • Brumby Runner

    Yes, a definite knock on in Liebenberg’s try.

    Brumbies’ defense has been immense during the latter part of the season. Has won them a couple of games at least, and tonight protected the bonus point win.

  • Bobas

    Great game of rugby, the better team won and they did so but out classing their worthy opponents.

  • Geoffro

    The one trick ponies that have scored how many tries through their backs in the last couple games. ??. Gotta say that the Brums are our only chance of an Aussie team progressing past the quarters this year.


      PAH….. Not if the Rebels keep their A team forwards on the paddock!

  • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

    I think White would take the Brumbies’ attack to the next level. On current form, I think he would pretty clearly be better than Genia (who has been dire the last 3-4 weeks). Feels awful for Powell though,…

    • Steve

      It does and I would fear he wouldn’t hang around forever…

      • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

        Yeah, it’s a tough one. But on the other hand it would allow McKellar to give them both a half each and tell them to go as hard as they can for that half. Rather like that match vs Wales were Deans gave both Pocock and George Smith a half and they were the two best players on the field:


      • MST

        The other potential consequence of White’s return is Ryan Lonergan moving on.

        Returning White to the Brumbies may be a real double edged sword especially as he is more of kicking 9 which the Brumbies game plan has gone away from.

        • Brumby Runner

          Goal kicking could be a bonus though.

        • MST

          Yeah I know, Ryan Lonergan ‘s goal kicking is excellent. It’ the one blessing to having him on the bench right now come finals. At a pinch you could bring him on to do the goalkicking to close out the game.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          I think he was talking about White’s goal kicking…

        • Brumby Runner

          Yes, I was. But both Nic and Ryan could offer better, or more consistent, goal kicking than Christian does. Like last year, Christian needs to get out on the park and practise and practise until he gets rid of his hook again. When kicking straight, he’s as good as anyone.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          Why would Lonergan move on? He’s barely finished school.

        • MST

          Consider who we just signed after returning from NZ after they left school.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          How many players break through in their very young 20s these days? Not many, and those that do end up injured often and seriously (JOC, Valetini, Uelese, Petaia, etc).

        • MST

          Look at the Reds and Crusaders for example, it suggests otherwise when it comes to young players. In Europe they are also taking players on while their young. Most sports do now. Have a look at AFL for example. Valetini and Uelese came with an injury history, Petiaia was just unlucky. In reality Pocock fits in the injury plagued group .

          When Ryan can look at the opportunity Isaacs Lucas is getting compared to being relegated to the 3rd option for the next 2+ years if White turn up he would be unwise to not look for options where he can get game time to develop or he will fall behind the pack.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          Did George Smith come through today, or in the early days of professionalism when the sport was considerably less professional?

          Also, is George Smith the average player that people should be compared against, or the exception to virtually every rule that holds true to other players?

          Seems a bit like pretending Michael Jordan is the average basketballer that newly drafted players should be compared to.

    • Brumby Runner

      On form, Joe is the best No 9 going around at present anyway.

      • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

        Best in Australia for sure. But White’s performances in the premiership have been fantastic.

  • Crescent

    Highlight for me in watching this was seeing something that has been depressingly absent for AU rugby for some time – some rugby smarts.

    Brumbies set up some attacking mauls, saw the Bulls had trained well to defend them, and switched plans. Some variations off the line out and unleashing the back line. Plans A, B and C at least, and the wit to switch them up as a team.

    Also nice to see a pretty rounded team display. TK may have been on the board, but the team made sure he got there. Warmed the cockles of my cold, black heart. That said, Sio (I think) should be heavily mocked by his fellow low numbers for getting tackled by Speckman! Winger taking down a prop must be heckled appropriately….

    Games like this are what will bring punters back to the stadium – smart, enterprising play that makes entertaining watching.

  • Pedro

    On the Bulls, they defended the Brumbies maul well but couldn’t prevent it being a platform for wider attacks. The one thing I thought was obvious and a bit strange was how deep they were running in attack. It seemed like they were trying to create one on ones, but it didn’t consistently work for them and they failed to change their tactics to account for that.

  • Nutta

    Morning fellow fornicators and drunkards

    Pete Samu – wow.

    K’train – fantastic

    Donkeys – an Australian team that has a plan A B & C? I call bullshit. You guys can’t be Australian. I haven’t seen that in Oz rugby since buggered-if-I-know-when!

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