Six-try Brumbies tame Lions
4/27/2012 9:50:01 PM -
JOHANNESBURG (AFP) - Physical strength and slick handling helped ACT Brumbies to a six-try 34-20 victory over Golden Lions Friday in the Super 15 at Ellis Park.
The victory margin would have been much greater on a cool, clear night in the South African economic hub had Australian goal kickers Christian Lealiifano and Jesse Mogg been on target.
Fly-half Lealiifano and full-back Mogg each missed three of four shots at goal as Brumbies stretched their lead to six points over defending champions Queensland Reds in the Australian Conference.
Right-wing Henry Speight (two), loose-head prop Ruaidhri Murphy, outside centre Andrew Smith, left-wing Joseph Tomane and tight-head prop Ben Alexander crossed the line for tries and Lealiifano and Mogg added a conversion each.
Down 34-6 midway through the second half before a small public-holiday crowd and reduced to 14 men after replacement back Butch James was sin binned for a blatant shoulder charge, the situation looked grim for the lowly Lions.
But the bottom team in the South African Conference stirred themselves and outside centre Jaco Taute and loose-head Caylib Oosthuizen claimed a pushover try each with fly-half Elton Jantjies converting both.
Jantjies also kicked two penalties during a first half in which the Lions led twice before the power and pace of the Brumbies told to turn over with a 17-6 advantage.
Victory completed a satisfactory two-match tour for the Brumbies, who collected two bonus points from a narrow loss to three-time title-holders Northern Bulls in Pretoria last weekend.
Brumbies are coached by Jake White, who guided South Africa to their second Rugby World Cup triumph in Paris five years ago and joined the Canberra outfit last year.
"We are very happy to leave South Africa with seven points," said stand-in Brumbies skipper and hooker Stephen Moore, "and now we return home to prepare for a massive match with the Waratahs next weekend."
Lions captain and eighthman Josh Strauss said: "We did not concentrate when defending for the 80 minutes and paid the penalty. However, the team showed a lot of character to come back in the closing stages."
After seven defeats in eight games, the Lions begin a four-match Australasia tour next weekend away to New Zealand Conference pacesetters Waikato Chiefs in Pukekohe.