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Wallabies star pulled off as Reds win ugly against Rebels

Connor Vest of the Reds celebrates victory during the round 12 Super Rugby Pacific match between Queensland Reds and Melbourne Rebels at Suncorp Stadium, on May 10, 2024, in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Albert Perez/Getty Images)

The Queensland Reds have ground out a gritty 26-22 win over the Melbourne Rebels to stay in touch with the Super Rugby Pacific top four and all-but ensure their post-season campaign.


The Reds, fresh off a brilliant victory over the Crusaders a week ago, were outplayed on Friday in the first half at Suncorp Stadium and trailed 15-5 to a Rebels side hit hard by injuries to key players.

But they cashed in when Rebels winger Lachie Anderson was yellow-carded, scoring three tries with him sidelined to remain fifth with three games to play.

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The Rebels, one spot back, earned a bonus point that could be crucial in the finals picture ahead of a tough run home against the Chiefs, Brumbies and Drua.

They lost captain Rob Leota and Alex Mafi to injuries before kick-off and prop Taniel Tupou (concussion) joined them inside 10 minutes.

Match Summary

Penalty Goals
Drop Goals
Line Breaks
Turnovers Lost
Turnovers Won

Yet they dominated all facets in the first half, as they were strong in contact and more disciplined in defence and at the breakdown.

Flanker Vaiolini Ekuasi was powerful and former Reds back Filipo Dauguna packed a punch at outside centre.


The Queenslanders scored first when Matt Faessler finished a driving maul but the Rebels’ one-two punch – tries to Andrew Kellaway and Sam Talakai – made it 15-5 at the break.

Les Kiss’s men were brighter when they returned, pounding the Rebels’ line before Anderson was given his marching orders.

The points flowed, with Jock Campbell and Tim Ryan – his sixth in three career starts – scoring fluent tries and Fraser McReight finishing another maul.

They managed 21 points in the 10 minutes the Rebels were a man down, as Tate McDermott (suspension) and James O’Connor (injured) made returns off the bench in that time.


But Anderson’s return sparked the visitors, with Maciu Nabolakasi strolling over to make it a four-point game inside the final 10 minutes.

The Rebels probed in the final minute inside the Reds’ 22, their 14 phases eventually undone by an innocuous knock-on as the Reds hung on.

Queensland weren’t without their concerns, with star backrower Harry Wilson going off in the second half with an apparent forearm injury while McDermott provided spark after three games on the sidelines.



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Jeffrey 72 days ago

Southern hemisphere Rugby is exactly that, boring. Northern Hemisphere Rugby is soooo much more entertaining and better with better players.

Jacinda 72 days ago

It was so boring

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Tim 4 hours ago
'It’s a mental thing': Joe Schmidt on the Wallabies' flyhalf issues

Ben Donaldson had not played Super Rugby for the past eight weeks. Surely, he was playing Shute Shield for Randwick in that time to keep up the fitness…?? Eight weeks is a long break to be thrust in against a hungry skillful side like Georgia who deserve to be in the “7 Nations”. (Italy, Wales & Scotland v Georgia, can’t wait to see those ones). In the second test against Wales, Donaldson was put on for nine minutes. That was a mistake from the coaching team, who already knew he was starting the following week against Georgia. They should have put him on for 20-25 minutes, with Nick Whyte at halfback, and their combination from the Force would have flowed. Donaldsons first 20 minutes against Georgia was a shocker. However, well done to Joe Schmidt for keeping him out there because Donaldsons game improved as the rust came off, he was hammered a few times and handled it and he came into his groove. He made mistakes which they will all learn from. Ben Donaldson is a naturally talented rugby player who the Wallabies have to stick with at no.10. “Over the black Dot-aldson” is a good nick name for him with his awesome goal kicking style. It looks as though, off the boot, it’s going to hit the post. Then it just curves in beautifully every time, once he is in the groove. Donaldsons play this season for the Force, with Kurtley and co., was amazing to watch. Kurtley making one of the best comebacks in history. Donaldson has to be played consistently with Flash Gordon, Big LEN, McReight, Tupou, Kellaway. Oh, that’s right, there is Bell, Kerevi, Petaia (This list does go on a bit). Donaldson will be slotting these weapons into gaps, and into the clear, before we know it… One more thing which I will just assume is happening, just include JOC in the Wallabies squad. He is a rugby genius. His skills, wisdom and experience would be infectious around the Wallabies relatively inexperienced backline. JOC has mastered the art of all the positions long ago. JOC is so skilled and match fit atm taking THE REDS, at no.10, within a point of beating Wales. He can come off the bench and slot into the backline for the Wallabies at 10, 12, 13 or 15 at any stage of a test match. Ummm yeah, not bad… I am assuming that BIG JOE, Laurie “Gandalf” Fischer, Mike “The scrum Doctor” Cron and the team obviously already know all this. I am just a passionate rugby union supporter, and I am very happy that these guys are in charge of the coaching duties, what a coaching team the Wallabies have been blessed with. (Good luck with selecting the match day 23 when Will Skelton, who was playing amazing rugby for La Rochelle, and the boys return from Europe/Japan, Samu Kerevi…???) Now just imagine having Bernie Larkham, Toutai Kefu, Nathan Grey and John “Nobody” Eales as your coaching apprentices… GO AUSTRALIAN RUGBY… Doing a great job Phil Waugh, Joe Roff, Dan Herbert and the team. An amazing three years ahead. GO THE WALLABIES… GO THE WALLAROOS… GO THE 7’s in Paris…

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