Rebels fightback to beat South African opposition for the first time
Last Updated: 18/05/13 11:00am
The Rebels produced a defiant second-half comeback to beat the Stormers 30-21 in Melbourne on Friday.
It was the first time the Rebels have beaten a South African team in Super Rugby.
The Rebels took an early lead when Jason Woodward successfully kicked a fourth minute penalty before Scott Higginbotham charged over the line to score the first try of the match and extend the lead.
However three minutes later the Stormers won a scrum inside the Rebels 22 to release scrum-half Louis Schreuder to score the first try for the visitors as he defied an attempted tackle on his way over the line.
With momentum switching in favour of the Stormers, Eben Etzebeth broke through the Rebels defence to find Bryan Habana, who raced through to score his 54th Super Rugby try.
A late first-half penalty kicked by Woodward left the match hanging in the balance with one point separating the sides at the interval.
The Rebels restored their lead soon after the restart when Hugh Pyle touched down after a prolonged period of pressing.
A Stormers response quickly followed as Habana broke away before a wide pass to Andries Bekker split the Rebels defence to allow the second-row to run in his side's third try.
As the sides jostled to retain possession the Higginbotham managed to kick the ball towards the Stormers line before Nick Phipps was tackled off the ball as he attempted to touch down.
Following consultation with the television match official a penalty try was awarded in favour of the Rebels which was converted by Woodward as the Stormers were reduced to 14 men and failed to find a way back into the game.