Planet Rugby

Six-try Waratahs see off Rebels

23rd May 2014 12:24

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Rob Horne Waratahs v Rebels SR 2014

Rob Horne scores the opening try

The Waratahs moved to the top of the Australian Conference after securing a 41-19 victory over the Rebels in Melbourne on Friday.

The Sydneysiders notched a bonus-point for scoring six tries and the victory means they move above the Brumbies into second spot in the overall standings, albeit momentarily as the Canberra-based side face the Bulls later in the day.

Michael Cheika's troops controlled proceedings from the outset and were dominant in the territorial and possession stakes for large periods.

They should have had won this match by a much bigger margin but poor goal-kicking from Bernard Foley and Kurtley Beale kept the Rebels in the game until midway into the second half.

Foley opened the scoring with an early penalty but the visitors were rewarded for their early dominance with a superb try from Rob Horne.

The wing gathered a pass from Foley on the Rebels' 10-metre line, after Kurtley Beale was used as a dummy runner, before going through a hole in the home side's defence.

Horne then side-stepped Telusa Veainu but still had work to do as Jason Woodward was coming across on the cover defence. Horne didn't panic and fended off that challenge before crashing over.

Woodward then got the home side on to the scoreboard with a long range penalty in the 14th minute and the Rebels were soon in the lead after further three-pointers from the full-back in the 23rd and 26th minutes.

The Waratahs struck back with a penalty from Foley and crossed over for their second try shortly before half-time.

Jacques Potgieter was initially stopped just short of the Rebels' try-line but the ball was recycled and spun out wide to the backs where Beale put Adam Ashley-Cooper into a gap before the outside centre crashed over from close quarters.

Foley failed with the conversion but had an opportunity to redeem himself when Pat Leafa was yellow carded for a ruck infringement, inside his 22, shortly before the break.

Foley's effort struck an upright, however, and the hosts scrambled to get the ball into touch.

Woodward and Foley traded penalties inside the first 10 minutes of the second half before the 'Tahs crossed over for their third try. Michael Hooper pounced, when Leafa couldn't strike the ball cleanly at a scrum deep inside the Rebels' 22.

The Wallaby flanker scooped up the ball when it came out of the set-piece and, although Foley missed the conversion, the Waratahs were now leading 24-12.

That try seemed to knock the wind out of the Rebels' sails but the hosts soon closed the gap.

The Waratahs were on the attack inside the Rebels' 22 but a wayward pass from Israel Folau was gathered by Telusa Veainu, who outpaced Alofa Alofa before scoring his side's only try.

Woodward converted and with the Waratahs holding a five-point lead the Rebels were back in the game.

The visitors stepped up a gear, however, and secured their bonus-point in the 65th minute when Beale crossed the whitewash after Foley and Nick Phipps did well in the build-up.

Five minutes later a break from Ashley-Cooper was rounded off by Folau, and Brendan McKibbin added the final nail to the Rebels' coffin when he broke around the fringe of a ruck to score his side's final try three minutes before full-time.

The scorers:

For Rebels:
Tries: Veainu
Con: Woodward
Pens: Woodward 4
Yellow card: Leafa

For Waratahs:
Tries: Horne, Ashley-Cooper, Hooper, Beale, Folau, McKibbin
Con: Foley
Pens: Foley 3

Rebels: 15 Jason Woodward, 14 Telusa Veainu, 13 Tom English, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Tom Kingston, 10 Bryce Hegarty, 9 Ben Meehan, 8 Scott Higginbotham (c), 7 Scott Fuglistaller, 6 Colby Fainga'a, 5 Luke Jones, 4 Cadeyrn Neville, 3 Paul Alo-Emile, 2 Pat Leafa, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 Steve Fualau, 17 Cruze Ah-Nau, 18 Max Lahiff, 19 Hugh Pyle, 20 Sean McMahon, 21 Josh Holmes, 22 Jack Debreczeni, 23 Lalakai Foketi.

Waratahs: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Alofa Alofa, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Dave Dennis, 5 Kane Douglas, 4 Jacques Potgieter, 3 Paddy Ryan, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacement:(two to be omitted): 16 Hugh Roach, 17 Jeremy Tilse, 18 Sekope Kepu, 19 Will Skelton, 20 Stephen Hoiles, 21 Brendan McKibbin, 22 Jono Lance, 23 Matt Carraro, 24 Pat McCutcheon, 25 Taqele Naiyaravoro

Referee: Rohan Hoffman (Australia)

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