Penalties cost ill-disciplined Rebels

Sun, 13 Jul 2014 15:18
Large mitch inman rebels

Rebels coach Tony McGahan bemoaned the high penalty count and his team's own lack of discipline in the final outing of the season.

Rebels coach Tony McGahan bemoaned the high penalty count and his team's own lack of discipline in the final outing of the season.

The Rebels closed the book on their 2014 Super Rugby season with a disappointing 740 loss to the Bulls at the Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria, after trailing by just five points at the break.

Following a shock defeat to the Stormers the previous week, the Bulls edged ahead in a tight first half before blowing the visitors away in the second half by scoring four converted tries to nil.

Bulls' flyhalf Handré Pollard, the current IRB Junior Player of the Year who recently made his senior international debut for the Springboks, had a perfect match with the boot - with four penalties and three conversions.

Colby Fainga'a was a standout performer in his 50th Super Rugby appearance, proving a constant menace to the Bulls at the breakdown while Luke Burgess again provided steady leadership.

Jack Debreczeni, making his first start at his preferred flyhalf position in the place of the injured Bryce Hegarty, showed great promise in attack and scored his first Super Rugby try, but found his kicking radar off on the Highveld.

McGahan said he was "disappointed" with the result, but credited the Bulls for taking their opportunities.

"I thought our first half was fantastic; we attacked and defended really well but probably needed more on the scoreboard to show that at half time," he said.

"In the second half we were dominated through the set piece and gave away field position with some penalties.

"That, coupled with some crucial turnovers, took momentum away from us but you have to give the Bulls credit.

"If you give them 90 metres of field position from back to back penalties, they will take advantage.

"We didn't make them work hard enough for their points, and they did just that."

There was no fairytale finish for Rebels stalwarts Hugh Pyle and Alex Rokobaro, who both started in their final appearances for the club.

The departing Jason Woodward was denied a final game in Pretoria after succumbing to a back injury, while fellow departing Rebels Eddie Aholelei, Lachlan Mitchell, Angus Roberts and Chris Thomson watched from Melbourne.

McGahan thanked the departing Rebels for their work at the franchise, and wished them all the best for their futures.

"We are really thankful for Hugh, Alex and Jason's contribution over this tour and their whole time at the franchise, and also to the other departing Rebels.

"The players gave their all, all seven of them, but it wasn't to be.

"It has been a tough last few weeks of Super Rugby action, and although the players have worked so hard to try and get a result we have fallen short."

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 01 July 2016
Chiefs v Crusaders 07h35 Hamilton
Brumbies v Reds 09h40 Canberra
EP Kings v Griquas 16h00 Port Elizabeth
Blue Bulls v Boland 17h00 Loftus Versfeld
Sat, 02 July 2016
Sunwolves v Waratahs 05h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Blues 07h35 Wellington
Rebels v Stormers 09h40 Melbourne
Free State Cheetahs v Falcons 10h05 Bloemfontein
Golden Lions v Griffons 12h05 Johannesburg
Western Province v Eagles 13h00 Newlands
Namibia v Border 13h00 Windhoek
Cheetahs v Force 13h00 Bloemfontein
Sharks v Leopards 15h00 Durban
Kings v Highlanders 15h05 Port Elizabeth
Lions v Sharks 17h10 Johannesburg
Jaguares v Bulls 21h40 Buenos Aires
SUPER RUGBY
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Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 12 8 0 4 34
Waratahs 12 7 0 5 34
Rebels 12 6 0 6 27
Reds 12 3 1 8 16
Force 12 2 0 10 12
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 12 10 0 2 45
Chiefs 12 9 0 3 42
Hurricanes 12 8 0 4 40
Highlanders 12 8 0 4 38
Blues 12 6 1 5 30
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 12 7 1 4 36
Bulls 12 7 1 4 32
Cheetahs 12 3 0 9 17
Sunwolves 12 1 1 10 9
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 12 9 0 3 42
Sharks 12 7 1 4 35
Jaguares 12 2 0 10 14
Kings 12 2 0 10 9