Planet Rugby

Waratahs down disappointing Rebels

01st March 2013 10:15

Share:

Hooper waratahs v rebels

Waratahs: Sink the Rebels

The Waratahs recovered from a poor first-half performance to beat the Rebels 31-26, their first win of the season.

Dave Dennis' troops served up a poor opening to the match, conceding a multitude of penalties and struggling with their execution in all areas. However, with the Rebels unable to take full advantage of their hosts' struggles initially, an improved second half showing was enough for the 'Tahs.

Brendan McKibbin opened the scoring via a third-minute penalty before James O'Connor levelled matters five minutes later. O'Connor put the Rebels ahead with a second penalty just before the end of the first quarter, but in between his two efforts were a multitude of mistakes from both sides.

Line-outs against the throw, re-starts straight into touch and a general sloppiness permeated the match, with the Waratahs the chief offenders in the early exchanges.

The Waratahs were made to pay for their ill-discipline when hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau was sin-binned in the 24th minute after referee Rohan Hoffmann had handed out a team warning minutes earlier.

The Rebels made the most of their numerical advantage soon after as hooker Ged Robinson dived over for the opening try.

The five-pointer came as the result of a well-worked move from a line-out, with Robinson going short to Cadeyrn Neville at the front of the line-out. The lock passed it out to Nick Phibbs darting down towards the touchline and with the extra man created, Phipps was able to put Robinson over.

McKibben and O'Connor traded penalties to see the Rebels take a 16-9 lead into the break, with the Waratahs sure to get an earful from coach Michael Cheika.

Whatever Cheika said initially seemed to have no effect as Drew Mitchell made a mess of the restart, but the Waratahs gradually began to find their feet.

It was the turn of Rebels prop Laurie Weeks to feel the wrath of referee Hoffmann seven minutes into the second period as he was sent to the bin after persistent infringements from the visitors.

The Waratahs looked set to make the most of the opportunity, with Mitchell and full-back Israel Folau both getting their side close before careless errors brought an end to the attacks.

Bernard Foley eventually got over the whitewash for the hosts in the 57th minute after a sustained period of pressure following a sniping break from McKibbin. The scrum-half converted to level matters at 16-16 and the 'Tahs never looked back.

Flanker Michael Hooper and replacement Paddy Ryan both got over for tries as the Rebels' charge faded under the new-found tempo created by their opponents.

Hooper was the beatifically of strong work from Ryan before the prop got his own name on the scoresheet after Mitchell had found space behind the Rebels defence.

Kurtley Beale dived over in the dying moments to ensure the Rebels walked away with a bonus point but it will be little consolation to the visitors after they fell away badly in a contest that was there for them to take.

For the Waratahs, a win represents progress, but Cheika will know that a repeat performance against the Brumbies next week is likely to herald a very different result.

The scorers:

For Waratahs:
Tries: Foley, Hooper, Ryan
Cons: McKibbin 2
Pens:McKibbin 4

For Rebels:
Tries: Robinson, Beale
Cons: O'Connor 2
Pens: O'Connor 4

Yellow cards: Polota-Nau (Waratahs, 24th minute), Weeks (Rebels, 47th minute)

Waratahs: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Drew Mitchell, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Tom Carter, 11 Tom Kingston, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Brendan McKibbin, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Dave Dennis (c), 6 Michael Hooper, 5 Kane Douglas, 4 Mitchell Chapman, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 John Ulugia, 17 Jeremy Tilse, 18 Paddy Ryan, 19 Greg Peterson, 20 Lopeti Timani, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 Ben Volavola.

Rebels: 15 James O'Connor (c), 14 Lachlan Mitchell, 13 Mitch Inman, 12 Rory Sidey, 11 Richard Kingi, 10 Kurtley Beale, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Scott Higginbotham, 7 Scott Fuglistaller, 6 Luke Jones, 5 Cadeyrn Neville, 4 Hugh Pyle, 3 Laurie Weeks, 2 Ged Robinson, 1 Nic Henderson.
Replacements: 16 Shota Horie, 17 Paul Alo-Emile, 18 Jordy Reid, 19 Jarrod Saffy, 20 Nic Stirzaker, 21 Angus Roberts, 22 Tom English.

Referee: Rohan Hoffmann (Australia)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins vs Leicester19:45
Saturday , April 19
Exeter vs Sale15:00
Bath vs Worcester15:00
Wasps vs Gloucester15:15
Sunday , April 20
Northampton vs London Irish14:00
Newcastle vs Saracens15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Friday , April 18
Leinster vs Benetton Treviso17:00
Glasgow vs Ulster19:35
Saturday , April 19
Zebre vs Edinburgh14:30
Connacht vs Munster18:15
Sunday , April 20
Cardiff Blues vs Scarlets14:00
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Ospreys16:45
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , April 18
Castres vs Montpellier20:45
Saturday , April 19
Oyonnax vs Toulouse14:55
Perpignan vs Toulon17:00
Grenoble vs Bayonne18:30
Biarritz vs Brive18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne18:30
Stade Francais vs Bordeaux-Begles20:35
More Top 14 fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 18
Hurricanes vs Blues19:35
Melbourne Rebels vs Western Force19:40
Saturday , April 19
Chiefs vs Crusaders19:35
Waratahs vs Bulls19:00
Sharks vs Cheetahs15:00
Stormers vs Lions17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 13
Saracens 28 - 24 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Irish 40 - 12 NewcastleLondon Irish vs Newcastle Report
Saturday , April 12
Worcester 33 - 38 ExeterWorcester vs Exeter Report
Leicester 27 - 15 WaspsLeicester vs Wasps Report
Gloucester 17 - 18 BathGloucester vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Benetton Treviso 45 - 27 Newport Gwent D'gonsBenetton Treviso vs Newport Gwent D
Scarlets 27 - 20 ZebreScarlets vs Zebre Report
Munster 5 - 22 GlasgowMunster vs Glasgow Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Bordeaux-Begles 20 - 22 ToulonBordeaux-Begles vs Toulon Report
Toulouse 16 - 9 BriveToulouse vs Brive Report
Grenoble 30 - 36 Montpellier
Perpignan 22 - 12 Oyonnax
Bayonne 24 - 19 Stade Francais
Racing Metro Paris 37 - 7 Biarritz
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 22 - 16 Melbourne RebelsChiefs vs Melbourne Rebels Report
Western Force 28 - 16 WaratahsWestern Force vs Waratahs Report
Lions 12 - 25 SharksLions vs Sharks Report
Cheetahs 31 - 52 CrusadersCheetahs vs Crusaders Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 11
Sale Sharks 12 - 27 HarlequinsSale Sharks vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Ulster 58 - 12 ConnachtUlster vs Connacht Report
Edinburgh 22 - 29 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
Ospreys 25 - 19 LeinsterOspreys vs Leinster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Clermont Auvergne 23 - 11 CastresClermont Auvergne vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Highlanders 27 - 20 BullsHighlanders vs Bulls Report
Reds 20 - 23 BrumbiesReds vs Brumbies Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens1976
2Northampton1966
3Leicester Tigers1963
4Bath1959
5Harlequins1954