Rebels fail to halt Bulls
Steyn boots Bulls to top of South African conference
Last Updated: 04/05/12 3:00pm
A 21-point haul from Morne Steyn helped the Bulls to a 41-35 victory over Melbourne Rebels in Friday's Super Rugby clash at AAMI Park.
Steyn grabbed a try to add to his 100 percent record with the boot that saw the Springbok stand-off bag five conversions and two penalties in the Victorian capital.
The home side put up a spirited display as they welcomed back club captain Stirling Mortlock who made his first start of the season from the replacements' bench following a long-standing calf injury.
But they were unable to stop the Pretoria side who moved to the top of the South African conference on 42 points with the win.
Both sides secured bonus points by scoring four tries before the half-time interval during a pulsating opening period
Melbourne skipper Gareth Delve had the final say of the half when he turned down a penalty before barging over after the hooter had sounded to take his side into the break trailing by just 31-28.
Both sides adopted a more conservative approach for some 20 minutes after the restart before JJ Engelbrecht latched onto Steyn's neat chip through to crash over and break the deadlock.
However, Cooper Vuna struck back almost immediately with his second try and Kurtley Beale slotted his fourth conversion to keep the Rebels well within touch.
But Steyn gave the Bulls a six-point lead with a 72nd minute penalty and the visitors were able to hang on until the final whistle.
"It was pretty exciting from the stands, high intensity, good attacking from both sides, maybe not the best defensively from us but good to get the win," said Bulls captain Pierre Spies. "We needed these points."