Force upset Rebels to end six match losing streak

The Western Force held on to beat the Rebels 11-13 and end a six match away losing streak in Melbourne on Friday.

The result was not enough to move the Force above Auckland’s Blues so they finish the season in last place with three wins.

The Rebels finish the season with 7 wins from sixteen matches which is a record for the Melbourne side.

A length-of-the-field Luke Morahan try ruined Rebels captain Scott Higginbotham’s farewell.

Higginbotham, who will join Japanese club NEC Green Rockets after this year’s World Cup, was one of his side’s best.

But the Wallabies back-rower was denied a winning swansong by two superb individual acts from Morahan.

The Force winger first calmly collected a chip kick from Higginbotham, who was in a great position to grab the opening try after a clearing kick fell his way in the second half.

Then 18 minutes later when the Rebels were threatening, Morahan dashed away straight down the middle of the field to score after a Marcel Brache intercept to give his side a 13-6 lead.

Telusa Veainu came off the bench to cross in the corner in the 72nd minute to make things interesting in an overall drab match between both sides out of the play-off reckoning.

However, Mike Harris failed to convert to level the scores.

Harris also put a late drop goal attempt wide.

The Force led 6-3 at half-time after the television match official (TMO) had a big say in proceedings.

Rebels winger Cam Crawford looked to have scored the game’s opening try in the 31st minute, following up a brilliant run with a show of strength on the line.

It was disallowed by the TMO, who penalised Tom English for obstruction.

The Force then celebrated prop Chris Heiberg’s bulldozing effort, only for replays to confirm Sam Jeffries had slipped an arm under the ball.

The Rebels had won their last four matches in Melbourne.

Final Score Rebels 11 (3) Force 13 (6)

Scorers

Rebels 
Tries –  T.Veainu
Pen – M.Harris2
Con – 
Drop – 
Cards –

Force
Tries – L.Morahan
Pen – Z.Holmes 2
Con – Z.Holmes
Drop – 
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Andrew Lees
Assistant Ref 1:James Leckie
Assistant Ref 2:Ed Martin
TMO : Peter Marshall

Teams

Rebels

1. Toby Smith ,2. Pat Leafa ,3. Paul Alo-Emile ,4. Luke Jones,5. Lopeti Timani,6. Sean McMahon ,7. Colby Fainga’a ,8. Scott Higginbotham (C),9. Nic Stirzaker ,10. Jack Debreczeni ,11. Cam Crawford ,12. Mitch Inman ,13. Tom English ,14. Bryce Hegarty ,15. Mike Harris ,

Replacements :16. Tom Sexton,17. Cruze Ah-Nau ,18. Tim Metcher ,19. Sam Jeffries ,20. Scott Fuglistaller,21. Jordy Reid ,22. Ben Meehan,23. Telusa Veainu

Western Force

1. Chris Heiberg , 2. Nathan Charles , 3. Tetera Faulkner , 4. Sam Wykes , 5. Steve Mafi , 6. Chris Alcock , 7. Matt Hodgson (c) , 8. Angus Cottrell , 9. Alby Mathewson , 10. Zack Holmes , 11. Nick Cummins , 12. Kyle Godwin , 13. Marcel Brache , 14. Luke Morahan , 15. Dane Haylett-Petty

Replacements : 16. Heath Tessmann , 17. Guy Millar  , 18.Oliver Hoskins, 19. Wilhelm Steenkamp , 20. Brynard Stander , 21. Ryan Louwrens , 22. Luke Burton , 23. Patrick Dellit

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