Brumbies secure back to back wins over Sharks

The Brumbies secured back to back victories over the Sharks when they beat former coach Jake White’s Durban franchise 16-9 in Canberra.

The teams met in Durban last year when White was coach of the Brumbies and the visitor’s won 29-10.

The Brumbies scored the only try of the match and the result is the first time that the Brumbies have kept the Sharks tryless in Canberra since the teams met in the 2001 Super 12 final.

The Brumbies victory keeps them on top of the Australian Super Rugby conference and in third place overall while the Sharks retained their place at the top of the overall standings but their loss has allowed the Chiefs and Brumbies to close within one and two points respectively.

Lock Sam Carter scored the sole try surging through a hole in the Sharks defence
off a short pass from scrum-half Nic White in the 63rd minute.

The Durban team’s chances were not helped by an off-night from their Springbok
goalkicker Frans Steyn, who missed three penalty attempts and was astray with
his general kicking.

White’s return to Canberra added spice to the top-of-the-table showdown, after
the former World Cup-winning Springbok coach quit the Brumbies halfway through
a four-year contract after steering the Canberra-based side to last year’s Super
15 final.

It was a triumph for former Wallaby fly-half and now coach Stephen Larkham,
whose Brumbies side shaded the Sharks in a physical forwards-dominated contest
with both teams obsessed with kicking for field position.

There was a total of 98 kicks in the stop-start match with very little ball
in hand attacking movements.

While Steyn was having problems, finishing with three penalties from six attempts,
Christian Lealiifano landed three penalties and a conversion from seven shots
to keep the home side ahead in the second half.

Two of Lealiifano’s penalty attempts hit the upright, but in the end it didn’t
prove costly for the Brumbies.

The Sharks took a losing bonus point out of the defeat to lead the competition
by one point on 36 points from defending champions the Chiefs (35) and the Brumbies
(34).

The Brumbies are likely to be without winger Joe Tomane for some weeks with
a suspected fractured eye socket after a collision with a teammate in a tackle
in the first half.

Super Rugby leaders the Sharks have now played 11 matches and lost three. Worryingly for the Sharks though they have played four matches away from home and lost two.

Next week the Sharks travel to Christchurch to face seven time champions the Crusaders while the Brumbies head to South Africa where they will face the last placed Cheetahs.

Final Score Brumbies 16 (6) Sharks 9 (3)

Scorers

Brumbies
Tries – S.Carter
Pen – C. Lealiifano 3
Con – C.Lealiifano
Drop –
Cards –

Sharks
Tries –
Pen – F.Steyn 3
Con –
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee
: Glen Jackson
Assistant Ref 1: Andrew Lees
Assistant Ref 2: James Leckie
TMO: George Ayoub

Teams

Brumbies

1. Scott Sio , 2. Stephen Moore , 3. Ben Alexander , 4. Scott Fardy , 5. Sam Carter , 6. Fotu Auelua , 7. Jarrad Butler , 8. Ben Mowen (c) , 9. Nic White , 10. Matt Toomua , 11. Robbie Coleman , 12. Christian Lealiifano , 13. Tevita Kuridrani , 14. Joe Tomane , 15. Jesse Mogg

Replacements , 16. Josh Mann-Rea , 17. Ruan Smith , 18. Ruaidhri Murphy , 19.

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