Super Rugby: Brumbies move top of Australian conference with Waratahs win
Last Updated: 15/03/14 11:59am
The Brumbies held on in Canberra to beat the Waratahs 28-23 and take the top spot in the Australian Super Rugby conference.
Brumbies led for most of the match having scored three first half tries but as their lead grew their discipline suffered and they lost two players to the sin bin.
The two yellow cards allowed the Waratahs to come back into the match from being 20-9 down at half time to close within two points.
The Waratahs were down by 16 points with 25 minutes to play but clawed their way back into the contest.
Israel Folau tried to lift the Waratahs to victory, scoring a brilliant individual try with a rare touch with just five minutes to go to close the gap to two points.
But a Nic White penalty in the last minute secured what will go down as a classic contest between the two bitter rivals.
The Brumbies' defence was outstanding, limiting Folau and the star-studded Waratahs back line.
The Waratahs stayed within touching distance to earn a bonus point to keep their season ticking along after getting bonus-point wins in their first two matches.
Brumbies struck first on the scoreboard as scrum-half Nic White fooled the Waratahs' defence just metres from the line, before scoring the try from close range.
The Brumbies then shocked the Waratahs with some superb attacking play from inside their own half.
Second try of the match
Brumbies full-back Jesse Mogg then blitzed NSW fullback Folau, chipping over the cross-code superstar and beating him to the ball to snatch the second try of the match.
The Waratahs scrum came under scrutiny as a powerful Brumbies forward-pack allowed White to boot the Brumbies to a 20-9 half-time lead.
In the second half the weight of Brumbies possession finally took its toll when Tevita Kuridrani crossed in the corner to open up and 16-point gap with 25 minutes remaining.
But from there the Waratahs launched an assault on the Brumbies' line for the rest of the match.
The Brumbies' ill-discipline cost them a man when Matt Toomua was sent to the sin bin following repeated team infringements at the breakdown.
It was the Brumbies' turn to scramble and they appeared to get out of trouble on their line until Pat McCabe was penalised for a late hit on Beale.
The penalty ignited a Waratahs comeback and after 10 minutes of trying to crack the Brumbies' brick wall, Michael Hooper crashed over from close range to get his team back in the match.
The Brumbies spent almost the entire last 25 minutes with just 14 men when replacement prop Ruan Smith was also sent to the sin bin for repeated team infringements.
Folau broke through three tackles in open play then carried Nic White over the line to score a crucial try with just five minutes left in the match.
It cut the margin to just two points, but the Brumbies held on for a tight victory with White booting a penalty in the last minute.
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