The Waratahs won their last fixture of the 2020 Super Rugby AU against the Rebels with 38-32.
Both teams were hoping to seal their places in the playoffs with the result of this fixture. However, the Waratahs will support the Western Force to beat the Rebels next weekend while the Rebels only needs a win to advance to the play-offs.
The Rebels opened the scoring after just 3 minutes on the clock with a converted penalty. A try minutes later by the Waratahs set the tune for a free-flowing action-packed game. After 20 minutes of play, the Waratahs were doing the most of the attacking, with the Rebels' defence coping well.
A second try by the Waratahs early in the third quarter gave them a lead of 14-3. The momentum at that stage with the Waratahs dominated all stats at that stage. The Rebels started to claw their way back into the game during the last 10 minutes of the first half. A converted try with 3 minutes left of the first half was just reward for the Rebels. A converted penalty by the Waratahs stretched their lead to 17-10 which was also the halftime score.
The Rebels continued their form of the last 10 minutes of the first half and scored the equalising try after just 6 minutes in the second half. However, the Waratahs struck back minutes later to regain the lead. With the momentum that changed the whole time, the Waratahs scored their 4th try after spending 5 minutes on their own tryline to stretch their lead to 31-17.
The try fest continued in the last quarter as both teams chased a win to secure a play-off place. With 10 minutes to go, the Waratahs lead was cut two just 2 points (31-29) after two tries by the Rebels. The Waratahs reply was quick with their 5th try, however, a converted penalty by the Rebels with 4 minutes to go left the Rebels to just win next weekend to qualify for the playoffs.
The Waratahs who won 38-32 and will pray for a miracle win by the Western Force over the Rebels next weekend.
Waratahs: Tries: Jake Gordon, Jack Dempsey, Harry Johnson-Holmes, Joey Walton, Will Harrison. Conversions: Will Harrison (5). Penalty: Will Harrison.
Rebels: Tries: Matt To’omua, Isi Naisarani (2), Marika Koroibete. Conversions: Matt To’omua (3). Penalties: Matt To’omua (2).
Waratahs: 1. Tom Roberson, 2. Tom Horton, 3. Harry Johnson-Holmes, 4. Ned Hanigan, 5. Rob Simmons (c), 6. Lachlan Swinton, 7. Michael Hooper, 8. Jack Dempsey, 9. Jake Gordon, 10. Will Harrison, 11. Alex Newsome (VC), 12. Tepai Moeroa, 13. Joey Walton, 14. James Ramm, 15. Jack Maddocks. Replacements: 16. Robbie Abel, 17. Tetera Faulkner, 18. Angus Bell, 19. Tom Staniforth, 20. Will Harris, 21. Mitch Short, 22. Ben Donaldson, 23. Nick Malouf.
Rebels: 1. Cameron Orr, 2. Jordan Uelese, 3. Jermaine Ainsley, 4. Matt Philip, 5. Trevor Hosea, 6. Michael Wells, 7. Brad Wilkin, 8. Isi Naisarani, 9. Frank Lomani, 10. Andrew Deegan, 11. Marika Koroibete, 12. Matt To’omua (c), 13. Campbell Magnay, 14. Andrew Kellaway, 15. Reece Hodge. Replacements: 16. Efitusi Maafu, 17. Cabous Eloff, 18. Pone Fa’amausili, 19. Michael Stolberg, 20. Richard Hardwick, 21. James Tuttle, 22. Bill Meakes, 23. Tom Pincus.