Rebels roll the Brumbies - Green and Gold Rugby
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Rebels roll the Brumbies

Rebels roll the Brumbies

The Melbourne Rebels have kicked off their 2019 season with a gritty 34-27 win over the Brumbies in Canberra. Lead superbly by Will Genia and his old mate Quade Cooper, the Rebels recovered from a 10-0 defecit and barely any ball in the first half to complete a seven point win with a dominant second half display.

The Match

The Brumbies jumped out of the gates early and should have scored the opening but for Quade Cooper pulling off a try saving tackle on Tevita Kuridrani.

They settled for a penalty goal but then suffered a double injury blow early with both David Pocock and new recruit Toni Pulu going off with head injuries. Pocock copped an accidental elbow from Dane Haylett-Petty and Pulu clashed heads with Billy Meakes.

The home side went to the rolling maul and Folau Fainga’a scored the try but the Rebels hit back straight away with Tom English twisting his way over to score after some great lead up work from Will Genia with some great support after a poor chase from the Brumbies exiting their end gave Genia space down the left wing.

Things got worse for the Brumbies in comical fashion as Irae Simone attempted what looked like a kick pass to the wing but it fell into the arms of Jack Maddocks who had the easiest run to the line to give the Rebels a 12-10 lead despite barely having their hands on the ball.

The Brumbies scrum was edging their counter parts and it allowed them to get out of trouble on a few occasions and got them down the Rebels end and it was the forwards doing the hard work and it came to Rory Arnold who really did dive over to put the Brumbies back in front.

But again, the Rebels didn’t seem concerned and off a penalty of their own, patient work from Genia allowed Matt Philip to hit a great line and go over for another change of lead.

The scoring continued for the Brumbies and again it was their forwards doing the work and Allan Alaalatoa burrowed over from close range to give the Brumbies a 22-19 lead at half time.

Embed from Getty Images

With the wind at the Rebels back in the second half, they dominated the opening ten minutes of play. Maddocks thought he’d scored his second try after being put into a yawning gap from Genia, but the TMO ruled it out due to a forward pass.

But they wouldn’t have to wait too long to hit the lead again as a rampaging Anaru Rangi found himself up against two backs who couldn’t stop him from close range as the momentum was truly with the Rebels at this point with the pressure starting to affect the Brumbies, who struggled to get into the Rebels end of the field with the Rebels lifting the pace of the game and the Brumbies struggled to match.

With 15 minutes remaining, the Rebels looked for all money to extend their lead with Tom English in space but an ankle tap from Kuridrani in the shadows of the line saw the ball come free to the relief of the Brumbies defence.

The Brumbies had a rare chance down the Rebels end after a penalty but the lineout woes that started after the substitution of Fainga’a continued with their fourth loss in a row to get the Rebels off the hook.

With the game heading towards the end, Cooper made it a seven point margin and then the Rebels sealed the game with Maddocks using his cricket background to score his second with a spectacular grab off a Meakes cross kick with the Brumbies defenders bamboozled and caught scrambling after an early kick through.

There was a late consolation try to Sam Carter but it wasn’t enough for the Brumbies as the Rebels ran out deserved 34-27 winners.



The Game Changer

The second half. The Rebels had all the momentum right off the kick off and strangled the Brumbies attack whilst scoring 15 of their own.


The G&GR MOTM

Hard to spilit between Will Genia and Quade Cooper who lead the Rebels superbly. A double to Jack Maddocks was also instrumental in the win.


Wallaby Watch

David Pocock went off injured after five minutes and barely played any part. Without Adam Coleman, Matt Philip looked good in his combination with Luke Jones. The Genia/Cooper combo looked good and their game management contributed to their win and being a World Cup year, you never know what might happen with a backup flyhalf picked.


The Details

Score & Scorers

BRUMBIES 27
Tries: Fainga’a, Arnold, Alaalatoa, Carter
Conversions: Lealiifano 2
Penalties: Lealiifano
REBELS 34
Tries: Maddocks 2, English, Philip, Rangi
Conversions: Cooper 3
Penalties: Cooper

Cards

Nil

  • Nine tries and about three left out there. I’m seriously sleep deprived and that was enough to keep me awake. Well done both sides but the class in the halves from the Rebels put the Brumbies in the shade.

    Unfortunately the rolling maul is still the brumbies go to try scoring mechanism.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      The lack of planning and direction from the Brumbies was really poor and if they don’t develop something they will not go far. QC was very good in both attack and defence in his organising of the team.

  • Hoss

    Sanchez and QC were a thing of beauty.

    • Brisneyland Local

      See I was wise to buy a Reb’s shirt!
      Have only watched the highlight reel so far.
      But a solid 9/10 combo really is the spine of a team.

      • Hoss

        Watch it all mate. They bombed 2 tries, got stiffed on a third with a dodgy knock-on call late in first half and all this with a scrum that got blown off the park by Bumbling Ben O’Keefe – although in the interest of fairness most were deserved and by that stage the Ponies had convinced O’Keefe they were dominant at scrum time. QC playing flat and fast at the line was beautiful to behold.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Sweet. I will be the first to admit QC isnt Jesus Christ. His tackling technique, especially head highs still need work. But his distribution, orchestrating an attack, and his sublime passing are far better than the incumbent 10.

        • Nicholas

          Yep that flat line was great to watch and should only get better as the season goes on!

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          And with all that still won

      • Nutta

        Dude, the most important person in a rugby team is the No3.

        And the 2nd most important person is? The reserve No3.

        • Hoss

          Gold

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Of course

        • Brisneyland Local

          Pure gold Nutta. As I always said, “It all starts in the second row!”

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Funny as a flanker I thought it started at 7

        • Brisneyland Local

          I am sure it all starts where ever we are!

        • Hoss

          Tossers – 8 is the keystone, line-bender, spiritual leader and lover of the ladies.

        • Keith Butler

          Always thought 8s were the pretty boys of the pack.

        • Hoss

          And ???

        • Greg

          I think that was some sort of invitation @hoss

          What he doesn’t realise is that you meant the backs!

        • Keith Butler

          Which leads me to believe you were an 8. Still pretty after all these years? Will find out on 29/3.

        • Hoss

          Best you have an empty stomach when we meet – I have a head like a dropped pie.

          Go the Tah’s

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Oops

        • Nutta
        • Hoss

          Exactly what I said before.

          Empirical proof – at last.

        • Keith Butler

          Missed this first time round. A classic.

        • Nutta

          Cheers KB

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          I am hanging out for more of these mate

        • Nutta

          There are only 2 left to go – full-back & wing. I wrote them, it was just not ever the right time to post them.

        • Fatflanker

          So true KRL… Cheika’s appalling win rate is ample proof that having only two 7’s in your run-on team is a recipe for disaster.

        • Keith Butler

          As an ex lock BL couldn’t agree more. Although back in my day they were called second rows before we got an upgrade. Without a decent ‘engine room’ your scrum goes into reverse gear.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Mate believe it or not I was also i think the worlds only ^6’8″ full back. Coming from AFL I could take a mark, was fast over the first 15 yards, and could kick further than anyone in my team left or right foot. So in Defence and set piece kicks I was sometimes bought back to fullback. But mostly played no.4.

        • Keith Butler

          You could have been the next John Eagles. Such versatility.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yeah but mostly I has a second grader and played accordingly. But was fitter than most of the guys in my team courtesy of constant Army Physical training.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        worth the replay mate it was a good game

        • Brisneyland Local

          Have watched it now. Still look a little rusty. But gee that 9/10 combo is screaming to installed at the next level up.

    • Keith Butler

      Three Chancers and two very large Scotches later. A wins a win but f me sideways the Rebs scrum is a disaster that will bite us in the arse big time. Sav Blanc tomorrow.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        I’m not so sure. I think they need to work at being there for their ball and not worrying so much about applying pressure to the opposition. I thought when they focussed they provided a pretty fair base for Genia

        • Keith Butler

          Cold be right, focus on your own ball. Need some pressure on the oppositions ball though as they might be vulnerable to a second shove and go backwards at a rate of knots.

    • NSWelsham in London

      He was good but his turnstile defence needs to step up and he still seemed to be defending on the wing which will punish the wallabies. Anyway good to see two competitive teams with some decent hardassed back rowers. If McAffrey doesn’t replace Hannigan for sheer mongrel alone than Cheika really has bet against us.

      • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

        You do understand that our incumbent 10 is statistically as poor of a defender, and also defends on the wing?

        The reality is that Lealiifano, Stewart and Toomua are our only 10 options that are strong defenders. But Quade did tackle a steamrolling TK close to the line, and then he was the one who tackled Samu when he had that great break (albeit high).

        • NSWelsham in London

          I realised I should have pointed out the incumbent is worse, I was trying to state that we need Quade being a frontline tackler for as much good as he will do from an attacking option our Defensive frailties will always let us down.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          I beg your pardon, I misunderstood – I just get frustrated when in Aussie rugby criticisms are applied to Wallaby challengers to justify their non-inclusion that also apply to incumbents. I do agree, I hope our next incumbent 10 can tackle in the line.

          But I was wondering how common we think the practice of 10s defending in the back 3 is internationally? I’d say it is more common that it was, and partially because coaches like having their flyhalf being able to counterattack off of kicks.

        • GO THE Q REDS

          WHY does any team need there smaller PLAYMAKERs defending in the middle? If there’s time to transition out and it makes sense to let bigger specialist tacklers in there.. What’s the big problem. Nearly every team in world rugby does this. I’m confused. …..

    • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

      I just saw Kaf say that when Quade plays like that, ‘he’s one of the best 10s in the world’ and ‘maybe’ only matched by Sexton.

      I may not go quite that far; but it does indicate that the establishment narrative around the uselessness is Quade and the unbelievable talents of ‘Nard’ is starting to crack.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        Kaf is so full of shit I’d almost rather turn the sound down. he did play well on attack and even on defence he was organising well. His high tackle was silly and you’d think by now he’d know that. defence is still a weak point but I think it is well off set by what he does bring, especially if he keeps this up.

        • Brisneyland Local

          I agree. If that is his only weakness, then it is manageable. As opposed to Spanners, who cant kick, cant tackle, cant pass L to R, and cant orchestrate an attack. How is that better than QC?
          Oh yeah I forgot, he’s a Tah!

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          I think being a Tah is more important to the propaganda outfit at the SMH, but being a Yes Man is more important to Cheika.

        • Brisneyland Local

          DB, as always wise words!

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate that is so true. I think that’s even worse than the Tah favouritism

        • GO THE Q REDS

          Haha. It’s a debate that I find in winnable. It surprises me there’s a single person left on the planet who thinks Foley is international lvl. It’s also rather irritating how many obvious haters if Quade pick out the few things he does wrong and focus on that as if that’s what he primarily offered in the game. Bowden Barret is one of the worst stats defenders in superrugby yet you never hear people dwelling on his mistakes. EVERY player makes mistakes every game…… BUT if the offer FAR more in other areas too offset these mistakes….. It’s meaningless. It’s rugby.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      They did play well and really seemed to gel together well from the start. Quade looked good in his game management although he did some silly things at times that better teams will expose.
      I actually thought the whole team played well. Lots of intensity and commitment from all of them. They also seemed fitter than the Brumbies who were walking a lot near the end.
      I thought Arnold played well for the Brumbies but they seemed more disjointed and waiting for things to happen rather than making them. I think that’s where Cooper really comes into it, he seems to want to try something all the time and now he’s not trying to do it all himself

      • Cameron Rivett

        The Rebels definitely seemed fitter which was incredibly concerning, although the Brumbies had to bring on two of their replacements on in the first 10 minutes which doesn’t help.

  • Happyman

    I don’t want to get to excited about QC performance after one game but if he puts together a season like that it could be a fairytale year for him.

    The Rebels will struggle up front based on tonight’s performance.

    Good game and I am fizzing for the season ahead.

    • Ed

      Quade could play the house down for the Rebels this year and the best he could get with the Wallabies is he starts at 10 and has Foley at 12.

      • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

        Fingers crossed this changes with the selection panel. It’d be great to see Quade with Hodge, Kerevi, Hunt or Toomua outside him.

        The fact that Russell became 10 at Scotland while Johnson was there makes me hope he has a penchant for exciting 10s.

      • Greg

        You could be right.

        Just trying to think how spanners has gone at 12….

        I don’t see it. It is a new year of good selections and a balanced back row.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Greg I am hoping and praying you are right. BUt with Cheika the Ass Clown there, who knows!

      • Patrick

        Well with any luck the team would band together to give Foley a corked thigh then …

        • GO THE Q REDS

          Yeah I can see it now…. Quade at 12 taking passes from a 10 wearing a leg cast….. even a wheelchair bound Foley wouldn’t wake up selectors!

  • Nutta

    Evening

    Min 3 blown tries each. Exciting game and all that, and it was the first game, but the wasted opportunities from both teams were disappointing and concerning.

    Poor Rebs front row stability as expected. They have real firepower in the back line and their flat play was really refreshing and effective. And they have plenty of keen guys in the loose. But they are going to dead set struggle up front.

    Good Donkey mauling. Good, simple principles and direct execution. Likewise some nice scrummage from the nags.

    K-Train not passing is a worry. Great to see him back fit and robust. At his best he is hands down our best 13 – even if he is a converted 6. But his failure to use his outside men effectively is a real worry for a +50 test veteran.

    McCaffery is a genuine footballer. I was quietly impressed last year and now I’m a dead set fan. Not an athlete – he’s a bloody footballer. Tough, hard tackler, carries after contact, good linker, good scrounger. Watch out for him as our bolter for Wobbly6.

    Many will wax lyrical about QC. I am not a fan. But credit where due. He played flat, smart and creatively. His defence is still questionable. This may sound weird but he looked calm, composed and mature – not the vapid, skittish dodger I recall. I reckon the year away and out of the bubble looks like it was great for his recovery, perspective and maturity. He was fit, keen and looked like he was genuinely happy to be out there. It was nice to see.

    • Huw Tindall

      Irae Simone does look the goods. NRC player of the season in his first season but then got no game time at the Tahs and when he did was average. Brums look to have turned him around. If it wasn’t for that terrible kick pass which Maddocks scored from it would have been a good showing. Noticed he was taking the touch finders too and looks to have a good boot.

      • Ed

        I was sitting up the end where Simone attempted that kick. It was never on. He should pumped it downfield.

        An improvement on most of the Oz derbies of the past few years. One aspect that has not improved was the kick n chase of both sides. This should be something Cheika should be passing down to each AUS SR side as it is another form of pressure on opponents.

        Game management of Sanchez and Cooper was good in the second half.

        Powell needs to work on his pass, too many loops.

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          That kick was horrifying, haha! He must have felt awful. Poor guy.

        • Brumby Runner

          To be fair, Lealiifano should have taken the kick instead of passing to Simone. Simone then looked to be on the wrong foot to make a huge lick downfield, so tried something different that didn’t come off. Luckily, he won’t be punished for trying something.

      • Pedro

        Simone started a bunch of games for the tahs but fell out of favour. He looks a lot bulkier this season and this game is the first time I’ve seen him used as a kicker.

        • Brumby Runner

          Was consistently making up to 40m in the trial v the Tahs.

    • Greg

      “Many will wax lyrical about QC. I am not a fan.”

      What if he could play 3 @disqus_vjuclDn4w7:disqus ?

      • Brisneyland Local

        Pure Gold Greg!

      • Nutta

        Ahhhh, you mean what I feel his name was Matt Dunning? Well that answers itself.

    • idiot savant

      With you on all this Nutta. QC should look to underplay his hand for the remainder of his career. That was how to run a backline without saying, “look at me, I’m a dick.” For me Genia was the difference but I must say Im impressed with how the Rebels backs coaches have got all the players in sync with a flat 10 set up. QC had options and runners and with his passing game the Rebels are going to threaten so much more this season. Its early days but the fear I had that the Genia Cooper combo would be too slow wasn’t in evidence last night.

      Agree completely re TK. Kerevi would have made more of the opportunities as he is an offloader. TK plays like a winger, just doesn’t have the offloading instict. Of course TK is a much better defender. But then none of us is perfect. Except Poey of course…

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Your point on the K-train is spot on. This needs addressing as if it’s not sorted it’ll cost right games

  • Cameron Rivett

    Most of the Brumbies’ problems were mistakes that can be fixed when it’s not round 1. Their backrow dominance was evident – McCaffrey is one of the most underrated forwards in Australia.

    The Rebels looked good in patches which is what happens when you have a star backline but can’t win the ball out of your own scrum. I don’t see this changing as they have one of the weakest packs in Super Rugby.

    Was nice to see Quade play again, he is a talented player who has benefited greatly from experience and maturity. Genia always looks much happier when he has Quade outside him.

    • Huw Tindall

      Mccaffery outplayed Naisarani and Valentini hands down. Naisarani got through a lot of work but not massive impact.

      Genia controlled the game and was the main difference for mine. Probably helped with QC outside taking the attention away from him. Played really flat and looked organised in attack which you can put down to QC. Promising signs but scrum will cruel them.

      • Cameron Rivett

        The Rebels were a significantly better team in 2018 when Genia was on the pitch. I’m hoping that QC will provide an alternate playmaker this year and give them more consistency.

    • idiot savant

      Agree McCaff was terrific but not sure the Brums back row completely did their job. They missed a genuine 7 and as a unit failed to molest Genia. It was the time afforded Genia that made the difference in the game. He ran the show and was rarely pressured.

      • Brumby Runner

        No real back up No 7 is a weakness in the Brumbies’ squad. Why not bring in someone like Rowan Perry or Kitale Ale as cover?

        • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

          I personally think that both Samu and Cusack are very good back up 7s, although not in Pocock’s class.

  • Brumby Runner

    Have to say that was a more exciting game than the first half I saw of the Chiefs and Highlanders. Think the skill levels were better as well, which is a good sign if it carries through to matches against the NZers.

    Rebels won deservedly in a close battle. The Brumbies’ dominance in the scrum was counterbalanced later in the game by a poorly operating lineout. Anybody else think Mann-Rea throws the ball too flat?

    I thought Quade looked very good most of the time, and seemed to play within himself. Best portent for the Wallabies I can imagine but I could very well still be disappointed come selection time for the Wallabies. On the other side, Christian Lealiifano also had some excellent moments. Christian has gone back to bad old days though with his goal kicking. Hooked the ball to miss what should have been 2 or 3 easy goals. When Hawera is on the field, Christian should defer to him for goal kicking.

    Isn’t it satisfying to see penalty kicks for line travel a good 30+ metres. Simone has quite a boot on him. Banks however was poor with his clearance kicking.

    Naisarani and Philip were quite immense in the thick of things and made up for some of the poor efforts by the Rebels’ scrum. Samu had a really strong game when he came on too. He is one of the best carriers of the ball around the Aussie teams.

    A very good game first up. Thought it would be close, and it was. Congrats to the Rebels. The top of the conference is calling.

    • Hoss

      Yep, second place is still ‘top-ish’

      • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

        The reality as I see it is that the only way for the Wallabies to succeed at the World Cup is for the Rebels to win the conference and in doing so force Cheika to select many of their players over his favourites.

    • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

      It’s pretty sad how much his kicking has declined from 2012-15, when it was excellent.

  • Brumby Runner

    Just a thought. How much influence would Robbie Abel have had on the poor performance of the Brumbies’ lineout? As well as knowing the calls (if not updated) he would probably have alerted his jumpers to the low trajectory of Mann-Rea’s throws.

  • Bernie Chan

    Well…hope the injuries to Pocock n Pulu aren’t too serious…though the look of Pulu’s cheek suggests a fracture from his head clash with Meakes.
    Brumbies need another way to score…the rolling maul is not enough as it requires an attacking lineout close to the try line.
    The Rebels scrum…was it as bad as suggested by the decisions by the Ref? As a non-forward it seemed to me O’keefe had made up his mind that the Rebels were always at fault at scrum time.
    The Sanchez-Quade tandem was the difference…Meakes looked better with Quade at flyhalf, and Meakes made some telling ball-playing decisions.
    QC was by no means flawless, but he (and Sanchez…) managed the game very well, and they had the rebels playing right on the advantage line while the Brumbies were too deep.
    The Brumbies lineout crumbled late on with the game still in balance…
    Rebels have a bye next week…can the Brumbies bounce back against the Chiefs who will be smarting after letting a 14 man Highlanders beat them in Waikato.

    • Hoss

      I think ur spot on BC. The first few scrums were poor by the Rebs and that cemented in O’Keefes mind Pony scrum dominance and he stayed with that all match. There were times the Ponies wheeled and splintered and the Rebs still got pinged.

      The Rebs looked great in attack with QC flat and making defenders make a decision and quickly, but front row and the bench could be the archilles heal as the season progresses – at least until Uleses, Coleman and Hodge come back. How good was Matt Phillips – I rated him last year as the best lock in Oz.

      • Happyman

        I wonder why Angus Gardiner was on the line when his body of work is clearly better than O’keefe.
        I am with you everything was pen brims regardless of fault.

        • Hoss

          Gus has the Conch tonight for Gods chosen ones v the Canes

        • For 2019 the referees will work in ‘pods’ and work as as a team.

          So as Hoss said, B O’K has control last night, AG will tonight and those two act as leaders and a less experienced guy will essentially be a full time AR with perhaps a game to control thrown in here or there.

        • Happyman

          Thanks for the clarification.

      • Keith Butler

        Dead right Hoss. On one occasion the Rebs scrum went forward the Ponies wheeled and the Rebs were penalised for turning in. Would be interesting to see overhead shots of the scrums as in the 6Ns to see exactly who was not pushing straight. Rebs scrum still an issue for me though.

      • Bernie Chan

        Was nice to see forwards willing to do the hard graft! The loosies had a ding-dong battle…that McCaffery (?) for the Brumbies also looked decent. Interesting to see some fans bag Samu…he came on early but I thought he went well, and he showed he has a decent turn of speed too.
        Did Cheika even watch this game…

  • Sadly I didn’t see the game but it sounds from a small sample like the Rebels might be for real.

    I’m going to be quiet for a little while. We’re moving house and things are kind of hectic as I’m sure you can imagine! I’ll drop in as often as I can, and catch as many matches as I can.

    Hopefully after the move we’ll have easier access to Sky again and I’ll get to see some more.

    • Greg

      Happy moving. Don’t miss too much rugby.

    • Brisneyland Local

      Safe moving. I know how stressful that is. A glass or two of wine everynight is the cure.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Good luck with the move mate. Don’t let it get in the way of rugby

  • Hitcho

    Like everyone I was watching QC. I found myself hoping he would go well (but not too well being a Brums fan). I was also waiting for the brain snap. Weĺl I was pleasantly surprised. When Joe Powell was being a smart ass tapping QC on the head I thought here we go. Nekminit QC is smiling and tapping Powell right back making Powell look like a complete dick. He seems to have matured and good on him. Ps Powell needs to be much much better if he wants to be a gobby little smart ass. Genia ran rings around him.

    • D. Braithwaite’s The Brumbies

      ‘Ps Powell needs to be much much better if he wants to be a gobby little smart ass. Genia ran rings around him.’

      Hahaha, gold!

  • Anthony

    How does Ainsley get a gig in Super Rugby let alone the Wallabies? Every scrum I’ve seen him in disintegrates. Definitely needs to go back to NRC or Up North to learn how to win his own ball

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Well 2 out of 2 wrong for me so far. That’s a shit start to the picks for the year.

    I enjoyed both those games although the mistakes by the Cheifs and Highlanders was a bit of an issue. Both teams were guilty and it made for a stop, start display. I thought the Highlanders looked the better team and if they keep going they could have a good year.

    The Rebels certainly played well and deserved that win. Tons of commitment and QC was very good at guiding the play. Too many poor kicks from both teams and this is something they both need to work on. Either kick the shit out of it to gain ground or kick where your players can apply pressure. Far too many were in no mans land where they didn’t gain distance and there was no follow through to pressure the receiver. To be totally unfair I think this game showed why Ruru can’t get a spot in a Kiwi team and maybe he’s not the saviour for Canberra either.

    • Brumby Runner

      KRL??? Ruru for Canberra? He is the backup No 9 for the Rebels.

      Here’s a tip for all teams about kicking. A short arm free kick near the goal line (and the Brumbies had a few last night – a couple probably should have been full arm penalties because of repeated infringements) should be punted as hard as possible as far as possible down field. It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t find touch because the opposition simply have possession well into their own half (mostly) with or without a lineout. Much more productive than a kick that finds touch just outside the 22m line where the opposition will gain possession from the lineout.

      I agree that a lot more work should be put into the tactical kick/chase situation as so many are much too shallow. But credit is due to Lealiifano’s last kick from inside his 22m to halfway where Andrew Muirhead won the possession and the Brumbies had a last second chance to bring the scores back to equal.

      On Quade, regardless of his defensive issues, wasn’t it great to see a No 10 actually control and manage the attack. Haven’t seen that in an Aussie side (including Wallabies) for 2 or 3 years.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        Fuck shows the level of excess wine I drank last night. Must have been someone else.
        Yeah best part of the match. The real issue is “will it continue and will Cheika take note”. I thought QC did a couple of dumb things pushing the ball when he didn’t need to and he needs to stop that

        • GO THE Q REDS

          Who doesn’t push the ball when not needed occasionally? No-one. Who more than covers for that by creating opportunities at will? Very few…..

        • Brumby Runner

          Think you might be referring to Matt Lucas. I am not impressed at all.

  • Jack

    Hopefully Cheick managed to extract his head from his arse long enough to watch last night’s game. Or did Quade need to sign for that Tahs..??

    • MungBean

      KHunt will play for the Wallys. Wade won’t.
      I’d bet big on it.

  • Greg

    Does anyone have any idea what the maul penalty advantage was to the Brumbies at about 77 minutes? All I could see was 9 yapping.

    • Brisneyland Local

      Nope the pitch mikes / effects mikes didnt pick it up clearly. BUt with that Referump I did see him stick his hand up his ass to work out what he was giving that penalty for.

      • Bobas

        I actually thought Benaud Keith went OK. Considering he made his own job a thousand time harder by consistently letting the D team know he thinks the ball is out of the ruck. When clearly it wasn’t for both sides early and no one was asking him.
        My only other criticsm was he picked a winner in the scrums early and often but TBH that Ainsley guy looks like a lemonade sandwich.

        Good things were:
        – the English try, he was on the spot, called it and moved on, didn’t allow for a tip tackle check and subsequent lottery as to whether reaching for the line or Rangis impact were contributing factors.
        – he let the game flow mostly and made quick decisions and moved on. With the Genia flat pass he sorted it before the TMO. I don’t think it’s right to overturn on the evidence I saw but the fox comms and the two reffs saw it diffrerently to me.

        • Brisneyland Local

          I think he had in his mind that the Brums scrum was dominant so just awarded them everything in the scrum. Which wasnt correct all of the time. but yes their scrum was dominant. I must admit i really dont like him as a refferump so probably let my bias show.

        • Who?

          I missed the game, but Ainsley looked like a lemonade sandwich? That must be why Cheika keeps on picking him… :-(

  • Nutta

    Dude you are so wrong you are either doing this deliberately to stir me up or we seriously need to seek counselling. I’ll come with you. Fk it, I’ll even be the counsellor. Do you forget the complete lack of ball? Do you forget the resulting bullying off the ball? Do you forget the World Cup that won’t be named where our filthy opponent should were actually deliberately knocking the ball on just to make us scrum again to pull a penalty? Do folk neglect to recognise that the 4 Bill finals we have made have ALL coincided with having a decent front row but particularly with either having THE best or at least one of the best 3’s in world rugby at that time?

    Ok, because we had generational talent running about we overcame the deficiency occasionally. That’s historically been our saviour. But how much better would we have been if we had a semi-decent 3 earning us some decent phase1 ball?

    I am the first to admit rugby is the game for all shapes & sizes and I well acknowledge set piece is not a 1 man show. But up front it all starts at 3 and everything else becomes multiple times harder when you are exposed there.

    Everyone is important. Everyone is special. Everyone gets a cuddle.

    You is kind, you is smart, you is important.

    • Brumby Runner

      Nutta, having one of the best No 3s won’t guarantee a win though. Look no further than the Wallabies post 2015. Kepu and Ala’alatoa are among the best going round but our win to loss ratio in that period is abysmal.

      I think DBTB’s point was illustrated last night. With the best two THPs in the game, and a swathe of scrum penalties to the Brumbies, the Rebels still managed the win. No doubt the No 3 is important, but a game can and often is lost by the team with the best on the ground.

      • Nutta

        Lads my initial comment was tongue in cheek and is referenced to Bob Templeton I believe.

        A weak scrum can be offset by a smart midfield. A great midfield can be offset by a deadly 7. A rippa 7 can be offset by a smart kicker…

        It is the beauty of rugby that one player and one position does not rule them all.

        Never has and never will.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Spot on mate

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      You are a legend Nutta

      • Nutta

        Stop drinking.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          No

  • Crescent

    Nice to see the start of the Super rugby season.

    Thoughts on Brumbies v Rebels – nice to see QC back. I have never been his biggest fan, but haven’t been a hater either. It looks to me like a year in club rugby has given his body some time to recuperate, which has helped his confidence. Not to mention being outside Sanchez, so he slots in very nicely to the Rebs back line. Overall he had a good game – unfortunately having to listen to Marto on Fox creaming his pants every time QC touched the ball was getting more than a little tiresome.

    Finally, we saw some rugby smarts in flashes, which was a relief. The dumb plays were still there, which is a concern. The “smarts” highlights – Rebs limited their kicking in the first half realizing the wind was against them, Arnold’s try, vision from Sanchez in broken play turning into a try – much to like. The dumb shit – TK taking the ball into contact a couple of times when the pass the best option, the pushed passes from both sides when no recipient was in a better position than the ball carrier.

    Brums needed to make more of the wind in the first half, and Rebs made the most of it when it was in their favour. Rebs won the battle of the brains on this one.

    Loved McCaffery – had a great game and never quit.

    Fitness of the Brums is a worry – however, they did lose two subs in the first ten minutes for injuries, which probably exposed them a little.

    Gives some hope for the balance of the season – having watched the Chiefs v Highlanders game, there were plenty of errors there as well, so we are not as far off the pace as previous seasons (so far), but still are behind the Kiwis in many facets of the game.

    Going to refrain from talking Wallabies possibilities for World Cup spots – blind Freddy can see what we need to do, but MC is blind, deaf and mute. We’ll be lucky to escape the pool stage.

  • idiot savant

    Im almost with you DB. My only change is that I think 9 is now of equal or greater importance than 7 or 10. It saddens me as a former prop (and Im no doubt about to be kicked out of the club) to agree with you that scrum dominance aint what it used to be in terms of strategy to win the game. The ABs have never had the kind of scrum dominance enjoyed by enormous sides of beef from the high veldt or the rolling fields of Somerset, yet they have consistently beat those sides. Its gotta hold its own and secure your own ball but penalty machines like the Reds scrum dont win you games at the highest level anymore. Where did the Reds finish last year? And look at last night. The Brums scrum bossed the Rebels but it wasn’t a game winner. Agree about your point about refs too. Some refs refuse to allow dominant scums to overly influence game outcomes. Rugby lost spectators around the world to the endless resets of yesterday so the refs were given directives to minimise time spent on them which in the end means reduced influence.

    • Tedge

      The Brumbies gained field position with the penalties and this gives the team an opportunity for the 3 points, better field position or an opportunity to attack. The scrum can’t do it all but this gives the mental edge as well as physicall dominating your opposition. The AB have that balance of maintaining a strong scrum but this also wears down the bigger opposition front rowers given them the opportunity to move them around and find the holes. The scrums are definitely an important part of the game, just wait for the World Cup.

      • Nutta

        To get good scrummage you need a good 3. A 2 may be a converted fat backrower and even a 1 can be same is some circumstances. The back5 is the back5 and can be taught to coordinate & bind to get the Newton Force required to dominate PROVIDED you have a 3 who can both turn under their 1 and translate your force through. That’s the poetry of it. Good scrummage rarely means tries. It does mean you generate penalties. What you do with those penalties (3pts, kick for attacking lineout or relive D-zone pressure) is up to you…

  • GO THE Q REDS

    Some are saying “don’t get too excited about Quade Cooper yet. . It’s only one game” but it’s not really. Played very well in club land. NRC best player and that included quite a few other wallabies who didn’t stand out nearly as much, trial match where again looked very promising……and a pretty convincing possative vibe about his wide overarching benefits to the Rebels whole structure!
    I’d day he’s earned ALOT of respect with the way he’s playing and carrying himself. But as someone who follows Quade closely and not just reads headlines…… Nothing has changed!

    • Who?

      Did you see the news story this week, based off his PT’s tweet? His PT came down for some one on one time, and while they were out getting some groceries Cooper went to help a homeless guy. The PT opined on Twitter that this is the stuff no one sees, so they give him no respect as a person, though the unseen things show his character.

      • GO THE Q REDS

        Yeah saw that. What a too bloke hey! But I can imagine a few players that wouldve received the purple heart of rugby if they were caught being so human!

    • Patrick

      I actually agree. Reds fans like you must feel a bit bitter about it though :(

      • Bernie Chan

        Maaate..where would we start so far as QRU management handicapping their own team? The QRU are the champs when it comes to losing home-grown talent…Happy to see QC playing Super Rugby even if he’s not wearing Red. After some early missteps, QC has handled himself with dignity, and I don’t think the Reds’ fans will ever blame him for the SNAFU @ Ballymore.
        What could have been eh…?

        • Patrick

          that is what I thought you would be bitter about :)

        • Bernie Chan

          Hope the Reds players don’t start thinking what we’re thinking…!

      • Brisneyland Local

        I dont feel bitter anymore. I support the Melb Rebels. The pain only goes away after you stop slamming your head against the wall. I was a platinum member of the Reds for 15 years. The company I own was a lower tier corporate sponsor of the Reds for about 5 years. NOt Any more. They treat their fans with utter disdain. I thought it was only fair when the Reds stood down QC, Slipper and Frisby, as a member and corporate sponsor to ask questions and be provided information. They basically told me to go and fuck myself. So I did what any sane human being would do. I walked away. And I took my hard earned money with me.
        On top of that QLD Reds lost their major sponsor when he was indicted on corruption and fraud charges. They had to goto the RA and get bailed out. But if they had hung on to minor sponsors like myself, they may just have gotten over the line. (BTW I am not saying that my money was the difference, but a number of other minor corporate sponsors like me walked away. The total of all that walked away would have been the difference).
        As mentioned. I now proudly support the Rebs and am in discussions to be a minor corporate sponsor of them.

        • Happyman

          Good on you mate. No man should be told how to spend his hard earned so take my suggestion with a grain of salt. Look into grassroots a little goes a long way and you would be surprised how much bang for your buck you can get. I have done so in the past and it has been satisfying and gets you a surprising and of exposure.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Very good suggestion. Grass roots investment would be a better idea.
          The only down side is it doesnt get company profile. But after throwing away five years of company dosh with the Reds, I reckon I got little company profile associated with it anyway. Because the Reds were total losers!

        • Patrick

          And we love having you :)

        • Brisneyland Local

          Thanks Pat. Happy to be on board!

  • David Creagh

    I will be the first to say that the Rebels played well and completely outmatched the Brumbies. I hate whinging about the referee on a number of levels in terms of sportsman ship and the putting your destiny in your own hands but I will say I would have liked a bit more consistency from the ref. Penalised Fa’inga for a no arms tackle (quite correctly in my view) but ignored an attempt that was as bad from Billy Meakes as just one example.

    Cooper looked good and the Rebels were playing fast, flat and hard to the gain line. Brumbies looked slow and deep in comparison.

  • Brisneyland Local

    Go the rebs! ;-)

ACT Brumbies
@steve_l15

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

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