Brumbies edge Cheetahs with bonus point win

Australia’s Brumbies climbed to sixth place in the Super 14 standings with a 29-23 bonus point victory over South Africa’s Cheetahs at Canberra Stadium here on Friday.


The Brumbies, in the midst of a crippling injury crisis, recovered from trailing 13-12 at halftime to end a two-match losing run.


But yet again the Brumbies lost another experienced back to injury with goalkicking fullback Mark Gerrard limping off seven minutes from the end with a right hamstring strain, which could keep him out of the next two games.


The two-time champions already have Wallabies stars Stirling Mortlock, Adam Ashley-Cooper and Clyde Rathbone on the sidelines, plus the career-ending brain tumour to World Cup back Julian Huxley.


The match was in the balance until midway through the second half with the winless Cheetahs scoring a converted try and opting for a last-minute penalty goal to claim a losing bonus point for finishing within seven points of the Brumbies.


The Brumbies had not won after trailing at halftime since round five in 2006 against the Coastal Sharks, but had too much firepower for the South Africans in the second half.


Centre Tyrone Smith and flanker Mitchell Chapman ensured the Brumbies would see out victory with tries late in the second half for the home side to claim a scoring bonus point.


The Cheetahs rallied to secure a bonus point with a try to replacement scrum-half Tewis de Bruyn and a penalty after the bell to Jacques-Louis Potgieter.


A penalty goal right on halftime by fly-half Conrad Barnard nudged the South Africans in front by a point, despite the home team posting two tries to one in the first 40 minutes.


Barnard opened the scoring with a penalty in the eighth minute before Brumbies lock Mark Chisholm broke the Cheetahs’ defence and ran 30 metres to score in the left corner five minutes later.


The Cheetahs regained the advantage with a quick-stepping converted try to winger Jongi Nokwe in the 23rd minute.


The Brumbies struck back in the 32nd minute after a quick tap kick from scrum-half Josh Holmes.


Holmes passed to number eight Stephen Hoiles for winger Peter Playford to go over in the right-hand corner.


“It’s a bonus point and that’s what you’re looking for in this competition,” Brumbies’ coach Laurie Fisher said.


“We’ve still got some young boys out there and it was a fantastic experience for them.”

 


Brumbies 29 Cheetahs 23

 

Scorers

 

Brumbies
Tries – Mark Chisholm, Peter Playford,Tyrone Smith,Mitchell Chapman
Pen -Mark Gerrard
Con – Mark Gerrard (3)

 

Cheetahs

Tries –  Jongi Nokwe, Tewuis de Bruyn
Pen -Conrad Barnard (2),Jacque-Louis Potgieter
Con – Conrad Barnard ,Jacque-Louis Potgieter
Cards – Falie Oelschig (yellow)

 


Friday March 21

Canberra Stadium, Canberra
Brumbies v Cheetahs
Referee:
Steve Walsh (NZ)
Asst. referees: Kelvin Deaker (NZ), Daniel Cheever (Aus)
TMO: George Ayoub (Aus)
Asessor: Scott Young (Aus)

 

Teams


Brumbies


1. Nic Henderson 2. Huia Edmonds 3. Salesi Ma’afu 4. Peter Kimlin 5. Mark Chisholm 6. Mitchell Chapman 7. George Smith (c) 8. Stephen Hoiles 9. Joshua Holmes 10. Christian Lealiifano 11. Francis Fainifo 12. Tyrone Smith 13. Sanualio Afeaki 14. Peter Playford 15. Mark Gerrard


Reserves: 16. John Ulugia 17. Guy Shepherdson 18. Alister Campbell 19. Julian Salvi 20. Patrick Phibbs 21. Afusipa Taumoepeau 22. Matt Toomua.


Cheetahs


Hennie Daniller

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