Brisbane -Wallabies flyhalf Quade Cooper
scored one try and created another as the Reds welcomed back
skipper James Horwill with a nervy 23-18 Super Rugby win over the Bulls in Brisbane on Saturday.
The Reds lived
dangerously, however, and the Bulls almost levelled the scores with the
last move of the match only for centre JJ Engelbrecht to step on the
touchline before he dived over the try line to touch down.
back in tandem with halfback partner Will Genia for the second match in
a row, had added 13 points with his boot to help the 2011 champions get
their campaign back on track after a shock defeat to the Force
in their last outing.
VIDEO: Reds v Bulls, highlights
The three-times champion Bulls, who defended
stoutly throughout, were kept in the match by five penalties from young
flyhalf Louis Fouche and another from replacement Morne Steyn,
punishing the frequent errors by the Reds.
"We really shot
ourselves in the foot at times but I'm really happy that I got through
the 40 minutes and even happier with the win," said Australia captain
Horwill, who played only the first half after 10 months out injured.
"You saw what Will and Quade can do with a bit of time and space."
match was level at 6-6 after 36 minutes when Cooper picked up the ball
at the breakdown and set off through a huge gap in the defence before
offloading to Jono Lance when he was swallowed up by tacklers as he
closed in on the tryline.
Lance, who had already spent 10 minutes
in the sin bin for a dangerous tackle, made no mistake from close range
and the Reds finally got the try their earlier pressure had deserved.
turning around 13-6 behind, however, the Bulls edged back in front when
Fouche converted three penalties in six minutes soon after the break.
harsh-looking yellow card for a dangerous tackle sent Bulls winger
Lionel Mapoe into the sin bin soon afterwards, though, and four minutes
later Cooper was dancing through another gap in the stretched defence to
put the Reds ahead again.
Cooper added his second penalty on the
hour mark but Steyn responded 10 minutes from time to keep alive the
Bulls' hopes of a first win at Lang Park - hopes which were only finally
dashed by Englebrecht's stray foot after the final hooter.
was a tough game, it's always tough here," said Bulls captain Pierre
Spies. "Up until the end it could have gone either way but credit to the
Reds, they played really well and were hungry for the win."Teams:Reds:
15 Jono Lance, 14 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 13 Anthony
Faingaa, 12 Ben Tapuai, 11 Digby Ioane, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8
Jake Schatz, 7 Jarrad Butler, 6 Eddie Quirk, 5 James Horwill (captain),
4 Ed O'Donoghue, 3 James Slipper, 2 James Hanson, 1 Greg Holmes
16 Saia Faingaa, 17 Albert Anae, 18 Rob Simmons, 19 Curtis Browning, 20
Nigel Ah Wong, 21 Nick Frisby, 22 Mike HarrisBulls:
15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Lionel Mapoe, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Francois
Venter, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Louis Fouché, 9 Jano Vermaak, 8 Pierre Spies
(captain), 7 Dewald Potgieter, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4
Paul Willemse, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Morné Mellet
16 Willie Wepener, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Juandré Kruger, 19 Jacques Potgieter, 20 Ruan Snyman, 21 Morné Steyn, 22 Jan Serfontein