Planet Rugby

Brumbies off on the right foot

19th February 2011 07:07

Share:

Matt Giteau offloading in Brumbies against Chiefs fixture

Opening win: The Brumbies

The Brumbies opened up their Super Rugby account with a hard-fought 28-20 victory over a hot-and-cold Chiefs side in Canberra on Saturday.

Defeat will be tough to take for the Chiefs as they blew chances to score in the first-half, with Tim Nanai-Williams and Mils Muliaina the guilty men.

Had they gone over for their respective score, the Chiefs would have been in the ascendancy and looking at an away victory to kick-off their season. However, two fumbles with the try-line in sight cost them the points. A late try from Lelia Masaga did set up a chance to salvage a bonus-point but a post denied wing Nanai-Williams his moment.

Take nothing away from the Brumbies though, they were the better side during the opening stages as the visitors struggled for any sort of possession and/or territory in Australia.

Captained by soon-to-be departing fly-half Matt Giteau, the men from Canberra dominated matters early on and raced into an 18-0 lead in quick time. Their first try came from lively centre Robbie Coleman, who stood up well against veteran Tana Umaga in the midfield. The youngster's nimble feet proved key in his score as he found a mismatch in midfield and then showed poise to wrong-foot Muliaina.

The Chiefs were in trouble and desperately needed their set-piece to function so that their superior back-line (on paper) could get their hands on the ball. But Aled de Malmanche endured a difficult day with a second home try coming from Francis Fainifo on the left.

Giteau kept the scoreboard ticking over in a good showing at fly-half while opposite number Stephen Donald struggled to put his stamp on proceedings - his first real involvement being a 38th minute penalty that wrapped up that half at 18-3.

Following the interval came a glimmer of hope for the visitors when All Blacks winger Sitiveni Sivivatu got over the line and then replacement scrum-half Tawera Kerr-Barlow showed his promise by chipping over the top, collecting and getting over under pressure.

The gap had narrowed to just six points and looked like only continuing in one direction. However just when the Brumbies needed one of their internationals to step up, it came from the unlikely source of Salesi Ma'afu, who broke Chiefs' hearts. Lelia Masaga's 80th minute try then set up that chance for a losing bonus-point but Nanai-Williams' luck was out.

Man-of-the-match: Not a bad Super Rugby debut. Robbie Coleman.

The scorers:

For the Brumbies:
Tries: Coleman, Fainifo, Ma'afu
Con: Giteau 2
Pen: Giteau 3

For the Chiefs:
Tries: Sivivatu, Kerr-Barlow, Masaga
Con: Donald
Pen: Donald

Brumbies: 15 Pat McCabe, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Robbie Coleman, 11 Francis Fainifo, 10 Matt Giteau (c), 9 Josh Valentine, 8 Ita Vaea, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Mitch Chapman, 5 Mark Chisholm, 4 Ben Hand, 3 Dan Palmer, 2 Stephen Moore 1 Ben Alexander.
Replacements: 16 Huia Edmonds, 17 Salesi Ma'afu, 18 Stephen Hoiles, 19 Colby Faingaa, 20 Patrick Phibbs, 21 Matt Toomua, 22 Andrew Smith.

Chiefs: 15 Mils Muliaina (c), 14 Tim Nanai-Williams, 13 Dwayne Sweeney, 12 Tana Umaga, 11 Sitiveni Sivivatu, 10 Stephen Donald, 9 Brendon Leonard, 8 Fritz Lee, 7 Tanerau Latimer, 6 Liam Messam, 5 Romana Graham, 4 Craig Clarke, 3 Nathan White, 2 Aled de Malmanche, 1 Ben May.
Replacements: 16 Toby Smith, 17 Daniel Perrin, 18 Hayden Triggs, 19 Scott Waldrom, 20 Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 21 Jackson Willison, 22 Lelia Masaga.

Referee: Jonathan Kaplan (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Mark Lawrence (South Africa), Angus Gardner (Australia)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Heineken Cup
Saturday , April 26
Saracens vs Clermont Auvergne15:40
Sunday , April 27
Toulon vs Munster15:30
More Heineken Cup fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Saturday , April 26
Glasgow vs Edinburgh19:05
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
Sunday , April 27
Wasps vs Bath13:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 25
Blues vs Waratahs17:35
Brumbies vs Chiefs17:40
Sharks vs Highlanders19:10
Saturday , April 26
Hurricanes vs Reds19:35
Western Force vs Bulls17:40
Cheetahs vs Stormers17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 20
Northampton 36 - 21 London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Report
Newcastle 18 - 23 SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Cardiff Blues 17 - 13 ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Report
Newport Gwent D'gons 10 - 20 Ospreys
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Bath 32 - 20 WorcesterBath vs Worcester Report
Exeter 12 - 55 SaleExeter vs Sale Report
Wasps 38 - 30 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Zebre 26 - 13 EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Report
Connacht 23 - 32 MunsterConnacht vs Munster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Oyonnax 19 - 19 ToulouseOyonnax vs Toulouse Report
Perpignan 31 - 46 ToulonPerpignan vs Toulon Report
Biarritz 19 - 13 Brive
Grenoble 21 - 21 Bayonne
Stade Francais 37 - 23 Bordeaux-Begles
Racing Metro Paris 22 - 6 Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 17 - 18 CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Report
Sharks 19 - 8 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
Stormers 18 - 3 LionsStormers vs Lions Report
Waratahs 19 - 12 BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Castres 22 - 15 MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens2080
2Northampton2071
3Bath2064
4Leicester Tigers2064
5Harlequins2058