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Force pay heavy price in Hurricanes blow-out in Perth

By AAP
Jordie Barrett of the Hurricanes looks on during the round one Super Rugby Pacific match between Western Force and Hurricanes at HBF Park, on February 23, 2024, in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Will Russell/Getty Images)

The Western Force have been made to pay dearly for a woeful first half in a 44-14 Super Rugby Pacific loss to the Hurricanes at Perth’s HBF Park.

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The Hurricanes shot out to a 22-0 lead by halftime in Friday night’s match, and they were able to overcome a Force fightback to secure the bonus-point win.

The Force’s starting XV featured a total of six club debutants, led by Wallabies halves duo Nic White and Ben Donaldson.

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Madison Ashby after Australia’s win set up a quarter-final with New Zealand | Perth SVNS

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Madison Ashby after Australia’s win set up a quarter-final with New Zealand | Perth SVNS

But star Wallabies lock Izack Rodda missed the match after injuring his quad at training on Wednesday.

The Force were their own worst enemies in a one-sided first half in front of 7855 fans.

By the 20-minute mark, the Force were already on the wrong end of a 5-1 penalty count, with a number of handling errors also proving to be their downfall.

Winger Harry Potter was handed a yellow card in the third minute for accidentally taking out Ruben Love while the Hurricanes fullback was airborne.

The Hurricanes scored the opening try of the match six minutes later when Jordie Barrett’s precise kick was caught by winger Josh Moorby, who shook off Max Burey to touch down in the corner.

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A bullocking run from Love in the 21st minute set up Hurricanes debutant Jordi Viljoen for his team’s second.

Alarm bells were ringing in the 37th minute when Hurricanes lock Caleb Delany was able to pick up the ball from a ruck and cross over untouched.

The Hurricanes also displayed determination in defence, holding the Force up multiple times after the half-time siren despite outside centre Billy Proctor being yellow carded.

Fixture
Super Rugby Pacific
Force
14 - 44
Full-time
Hurricanes
All Stats and Data

The Force had 15 missed tackles in the first half, compared to the Hurricanes’ two.

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But Simon Cron’s men came out with renewed vigour in the second half in an attempt to reel in the deficit.

A powerful run from Potter with two defenders hanging off him eventually resulted in a White try in the 45th minute.

Force winger Chase Tiatia then pulled off a try-saving ankle tap to deny Josh Moorby as he was weaving his way to the line.

Force prop Marley Pearce was yellow carded for a dangerous tackle in which he clashed heads with Barrett, with the Hurricanes scoring via Asafo Aumua a short time later.

22m Entries

Avg. Points Scored
2.3
6
Entries
Avg. Points Scored
2.9
14
Entries

Despite the numerical disadvantage, the Force kept pushing, and were rewarded when they swung it wide for Tiatia to zoom over to make it 29-14 in the 57th minute.

It would prove to be the Force’s last joy of the match, with the Hurricanes running in their fifth and sixth tries to secure the bonus-point victory.

The Force’s line-out fell to bits in the latter part of the match, with a host of other unforced errors allowing the Hurricanes to finish with six tries.

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