A last ditch drop-goal from Demetri Catrakilis saw the Kings pick up their second win as they beat the Rebels 30-27 on Saturday.
A last ditch drop-goal from Demetri Catrakilis saw the Kings pick up their second win of the season as they beat the Rebels 30-27 in Melbourne on Saturday.
The Kings made the perfect start possible when wing Ronnie Cooke finished off a brilliant backline move with a try in the corner. Catrakilis converted from far out, and the visitors took an early 7-0 lead.
The South Africans doubled their score and the vocal home crowd were silenced moments later when Shaun Venter pounced for the Kings' second – the scrum-half showing superb skills and strength to get over the whitewash as Catrakilis duly converted.
It took the Rebels 25 minutes to post their first points on the scoreboard, when Ged Robinson burrowed his way over the try-line. James O'Connor added the extras before trading penalties with his opposite number to make it 17-10.
The Rebels drew level when replacement full-back Angus Roberts, on for the crocked Richard Kingi, raced in for his first Super Rugby try thanks to some good work from Jason Woodward.
The two sides went into the half-time sheds 17-17, and the game was anyone's for the taking.
But the Rebels picked up where they left off in the second half, as O'Connor added another three-pointer to his points tally before Mitch Inman carried three Kings defenders over the tryline for the hosts' third try of the match.
Inman's converted score opened the gap up to 10 points and the Kings – try as they might – just couldn't make up the deficit until Catrakilis closed the gap with a penalty.
Flank Wimpie van der Walt's late effort with five minutes left then set up a thrilling finish that saw Catrakilis step up to land the winning drop-goal.
Tries: Robinson, Roberts, Inman
Cons: O'Connor 3
Pens: O'Connor 2
Yellow card: Reid (76th minute – deliberately collapsing a maul)
Tries: Cooke, Venter, Van der Walt
Cons: Catrakilis 3
Pens: Catrakilis 2
Rebels: 15 Richard Kingi, 14 Jason Woodward, 13 Mitch Inman, 12 Rory Sidey, 11 Cooper Vuna, 10 James O'Connor, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Scott Higginbotham (c), 7 Scott Fuglistaller, 6 Luke Jones, 5 Cadeyrn Neville, 4 Hugh Pyle, 3 Paul Alo-Emile, 2 Ged Robinson, 1 Nic Henderson.
Replacements: 16 Shota Horie, 17 Laurie Weeks, 18 Jordy Reid, 19 Jarrod Saffy, 20 Nic Stirzaker, 21 Lachlan Mitchell, 22 Angus Roberts.
Kings: 15 George Whitehead, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Waylon Murray, 12 Andries Strauss (c), 11 Ronnie Cooke, 10 Demetri Catrakilis, 9 Shaun Venter, 8 Cornell du Preez, 7 Wimpie van der Walt, 6 Devin Oosthuizen, 5 Rynier Bernardo, 4 Steven Sykes, 3 Grant Kemp, 2 Hannes Franklin, 1 Schalk Ferreira.
Replacements: 16 Bandise Maku, 17 Kevin Buys, 18 David Bulbring, 19 Jacques Engelbrecht, 20 Nicolas Vergallo, 21 Marcello Sampson, 22 Siviwe Soyzwapi.
Referee: Andrew Lees (Australia)