Brumbies edge out Force

02nd Feb 2013, 11:58

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Clyde Rathbone: Scored on his return from retirement

Clyde Rathbone: Scored on his return from retirement

The Brumbies claimed a narrow 20-18 win over the Western Force in their Super Rugby warm-up game in Darwin on Saturday.

The Brumbies claimed a narrow 20-18 win over the Western Force in their Super Rugby warm-up game in Darwin on Saturday.

The Canberra-based team raced into a 17-3 lead.through tries by Matt Toomua and Clyde Rathbone but the Force struck back Ben McCalman scored a five-pointer which meant his side trailed 20-10 after Christian Leallifano added a penalty to two earlier conversions.

Aftr the break, Junior Rasolea scored a try for the Force and Brumbies loosehead prop Ruaidhri Murphy was sin-binned early in the second half for a professional foul.

Brumbies coach Jake White admitted that it was tough match but said he wanted to give all 30 of his players game-time.

"I think they started really well and the second group showed a lot of character in the way they finished the game off," he told reporters.

He said was pleased for Rathbone, who is returning to action after three years in premature retirement.

"What I am happy about is that psychologically now, he will be happy that he has got through 40 minutes of rugby and didn't look out of part," White said.

Force boss Michael Foley believes the result showed that they improved from last year when they finished second last on the Super Rugby table.

"I think the longer the game went, I felt the more we found our combination and the more we settled into a bit of a rhythm," he explained.