Rebels edge past Force

2012-05-20 10:42

Perth - Kurtley Beale continued to give Australia coach Robbie Deans a selection headache with another controlled performance at flyhalf, kicking the game-winning penalty from the sideline as the Melbourne Rebels beat the Western Force 32-31 in their Super Rugby clash in Perth on Sunday.

Beale, who has principally played at fullback for the Wallabies, slotted into the pivotal role at flyhalf after Danny Cipriani was released from his contract last month.

The Rebels backline responded, operating with more direction and purpose since the 23-year-old Beale took the number 10 jersey with his deft passing, linebreaking ability and tactical kicking keeping them going forward.

With the Reds' Quade Cooper only returning on Saturday from a serious knee injury and Rebels utility James O'Connor recovering from a lacerated liver, Beale's form is putting pressure on Deans to pick him in the position for their tests against Scotland and Wales next month.

On Sunday, Beale again proved to be the fulcrum of the Rebels' attack as they scored four tries in the first half, two to lock Cadeyrn Neville, and continued their momentum from their 28-19 upset win over the Crusaders last week.

The Force, who had lost their previous five games, also played their part in providing a spectacle of high-tempo running rugby in extremely warm conditions, with first half tries to Fijian wing Napolioni Nalaga and number eight Ben McCalman.

The visitors went in at half-time with a 26-15 lead that was reduced shortly after the break when Force replacement wing Alfie Maafi jinked his way through some porous defence.

Force scrumhalf Brett Sheehan then slotted a penalty from about halfway to bring the score to 26-25, though Beale extended the gap again with his first penalty as the standard of the match degenerated through poor handling and decision making.

Force flyhalf Ben Seymour then added two further penalties to give the Force a 31-29 lead with six minutes remaining before Beale struck his second penalty with three minutes left to seal the win.

"It was a really good performance in that first half," Rebels captain Gareth Delve said in a pitchside interview.

"We looked really good in attack but the second half we are really disappointed. They came back at us and it was pretty tense in the end." 



Tries: Napolioni Nalaga, Ben McCalman, Alfie Mafi

Conversions: David Harvey (2)

Penalties: Ben Seymour (2), Harvey, Brett Sheehan


Tries: Cadeyrn Neville (2), Gareth Delve, Cooper Vuna

Conversions: Kurtley Beale (3)

Penalties: Beale (2)

Referee: Marius Jonker (RSA)


  • Gary - 2012-05-20 12:28

    Yet another match decided by interpretation by officials. What chance is there for an interested, but largelt unschooled public, to have any idea of the "why" when we who have played since schoolboy age ask the same question. How do we coach the tackers let alone an audience that may take up an interest if they understood even a quarter of the rules. Wake up boys...this is an international game....keep it simple. e.g. explain how a rolling maul with the ball acrrier is 8 or so players OK yet a player bumping into a teamate in front of him is offside??? Just one of the questions we are asked to explain....and that to a team of players let alone bewildered spectators

      paul.sdoow - 2012-05-20 12:50

      i totally agree that the truck and trailer should be scrapped as the player in front of ball carrier is clearly an obstruction from the opponent . then we have the coming in from the side? should we also only tackle through the gate but in a maul the ball is not always in the middle of is often on the side for a quick blindside move but the attacker may not grab the ball carrier cause he didn't come through the gate. wait till a team does like what the Romans did and create a 15 man spear and just walk all binded then the opponent not allowed to bring it down and can't have a chance at getting to ball

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