Speight magic sees Brumbies home over Waratahs
Wallabies winger Henry Speight scored two second half tries to lead the ACT Brumbies to a 28-12 win over the NSW Waratahs in Sydney on Saturday.
With the Brumbies leading a scrappy but close match 14-7 midway through the second half, Speight put the visitors in command with a superb individual try from 50 metres out.
The Waratahs struck back with a try of their own to close the gap, but Speight then powered onto a ball 15 metres out and scored next to the posts to put the game beyond doubt, giving the Brumbies their third consecutive win over their arch-rivals.
"We knew coming up here it was always going to be a battle and the conditions weren't the greatest, but it was a really good effort from both teams and I really liked grinding it out," Brumbies captain Sam Carter said.
"Henry's in unbelievable form at the moment and you see when he gets going he's really hard to stop."
The Waratahs started the match well and had all the early ball, earning a series of penalties deep in Brumbies territory.
After kicking for touch three times and attempting the rolling maul on each occasion, the Waratahs were finally rewarded when prop Tom Robertson burrowed over after a series of pick and drives.
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The Brumbies struggled to keep control of the ball in the wet conditions, but when they did they were able to at last put some pressure on the home side.
They were rewarded when Wallabies centre Tevita Kuridrani steamed onto a flat pass from scrumhalf Joe Powell and touched down under the posts to level proceedings at 7-7 after 25 minutes.
The score remained 7-7 at halftime and for the first 20 minutes of the second, but the Brumbies broke the deadlock when replacement hooker Robbie Abel crashed over at the back of a rolling maul.
Flyhalf Wharenui Hawera converted to make it 14-7, which became 21-7 almost from the kick off when Speight received the ball 50 metres out, kicked ahead and regathered to score next to the posts.
The Waratahs struck back thanks to some smart work from replacement scrumhalf Jake Gordon, who scored his first Super Rugby try to close the gap to 21-12 with 12 minutes remaining.
But Speight's second try put the game beyond doubt, the big winger hitting the line at pace and brushing off two attempted tackles to touch down under the posts.
Waratahs - Tries: Tom Robertson, Jake Gordon. Conversion: Reece Robinson.
Brumbies - Tries: Henry Speight (2), Tevita Kuridrani, Robbie Abel. Conversions: Wharenui Hawera (4).