Rebels rout 14-man rubble Reds

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 08:00

SUPER RUGBY REPORT: The new-look Rebels took full advantage of being a man up for 70 minutes to rout an indisciplined Reds team in Melbourne on Friday.

The Rebels were fancied, given that they added the bilk of the axed Western Force's player roster to an already established base.

However, what was not expected was how poor the Reds would be and the 45-19 scoreline probably flatters the visitors somewhat.

Losing their captain in the 10th minute - the result of a cheap shot, when Scott Higginbotham charged shoulder first into the head of an opponent - they went down to 13 men halfway through the opening half.

However, Lukhan Tui was fortunate the referee was in a forgiving mood - his yellow card for a spear tackle was far worse than Higginbotham's shoulder charge and should have been a red card.

The Reds were competitive for most of the first half and held a 14-7 lead just on the half-hour mark.

However, the Revels started using their numerical advantage and the Reds lost their composure and ultimately the game by that massive margin.

Wing Sefanaia Naivalu, fullback Dane Haylett-Petty and flyhalf Jack Debreczeni scored two tries each - to go with a score for centre Tom English.

The Reds managed three tries through centres Duncan Paia'aua and Samu Kerevi, as well as wing Chris Feauai-Sautia, with two of those converted by scrumhalf James Tuttle.

"We had moments in the game where we clocked off, but to get a win in round one and start on a positive note, I'll take that," Rebels captain Adam Coleman said.

"We are taking it game-by-game and sticking to our processes. We will learn a lot from this match."

The Rebels won one game in 2017 and were, statistically at least, the worst side in the competition, but have been rejuvenated by the arrival of coach David Wessels and a host of players from the Western Force.

The pivotal moment came when Higginbotham made a dangerous tackle, his shoulder going with force into the head of Rebels lock Izack Rodda and failing to use his arms to wrap around the player.

The Reds had made the brighter start and led until just past the half-hour mark, but the home side began to make their numerical advantage count as they spread the play and sapped the energy of their opponents.

"The boys showed a lot of fight, and at times we played outstanding. We just have to get back to the drawing board," Reds centre Samu Kerevi said.

"We had to keep our composure, especially with two men down. I'm proud of the young guys, they put in an awesome effort, unfortunately we couldn't get the result for them."

Man of the match: The Reds' contribution to the match - apart from rare bursts of energy - was a red card and a yellow card that should have been a red card. In such a lopsided game most players in the winning side look good. Our award goes to the Rebels' veteran Wallaby scrumhalf Will Genia - showing his class.

The scorers:

For the Rebels:
Naivalu 2, English, Haylett-Petty 2, Debreczeni 2
Cons: Debreczeni 4

For the Reds:
Paia'aua, Kerevi, Feauai-Sautia
Cons: Tuttle 2

Red card: Scott Higginbotham (Reds, 10 - foul play, shoulder charge to the head)

Yellow card: Lukhan Tui (Red, 23 - foul play, spear tackle)


Rebels: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Jack Maddocks, 13 Tom English, 12 Reece Hodge, 11 Sefa Naivalu, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Will Genia, 8 Amanaki Mafi, 7 Angus Cottrell, 6 Lopeti Timani, 5 Adam Coleman (captain), 4 Matt Philip, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Jordan Uelese, 1 Tetera Faulkner.
Replacements: 16 Anaru Rangi, 17 Fereti Sa'aga, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Sam Jeffries, 20 Ross Haylett-Petty, 21 Michael Ruru, 22 Semisi Tupou, 23 Billy Meakes.

Reds: 15 Aidan Toua, 14 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 13 Samu Kerevi, 12 Duncan Paia'aua, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Jono Lance, 9 James Tuttle, 8 Scott Higginbotham (captain), 7 Adam Korczyk, 6 Caleb Timu, 5 Lukhan Tui, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Brandon Paenga-Amosa, 1 James Slipper
Replacements: 16 Alex Mafi, 17 JP Smith, 18 Sef Fa'agase, 19 Kane Douglas, 20 Liam Wright, 21 Tate McDermott, 22 Hamish Stewart, 23 Filipo Daugunu

Referee: Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nicholas Berry (Australia), Jordan Way (Australia)
TMO: Ian Smith (Australia)

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 23 March 2018
Connacht v Edinburgh 22h00 Sportsground
Munster v Scarlets 22h00 Thomond Park
Dragons v Cheetahs 22h00 Rodney Parade
Ospreys v Leinster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 22h00 Scotstoun
Kings v Treviso 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Jaguares v Lions 21h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Sun, 18 March 2018
Waratahs v Rebels 51 | 27
Sat, 17 March 2018
Jaguares v Reds 7 | 18
Wales v France 14 | 13
Lions v Sunwolves 40 | 38
England v Ireland 15 | 24
Stormers v Blues 37 | 20
Italy v Scotland 27 | 29
Brumbies v Sharks 24 | 17
Highlanders v Crusaders 25 | 17
Fri, 16 March 2018
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 31 | 25
Edinburgh v Munster 12 | 6
Chiefs v Bulls 41 | 28
Sun, 11 March 2018
Wales v Italy 38 | 14
Sat, 10 March 2018
Jaguares v Waratahs 38 | 28
France v England 22 | 16
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Rebels 4 3 0 1 15
Waratahs 4 2 1 1 10
Reds 3 2 0 1 8
Brumbies 4 2 0 2 8
Sunwolves 4 0 0 4 2
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Highlanders 3 3 0 0 13
Hurricanes 3 2 0 1 10
Crusaders 4 2 0 2 10
Chiefs 3 2 0 1 8
Blues 4 1 0 3 6
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 5 4 0 1 19
Stormers 5 2 0 3 9
Sharks 4 1 1 4 9
Bulls 4 1 0 3 5
Jaguares 4 1 0 3 4