Queensland Super Rugby franchise the Reds will have home advantage in this match as the match is at Suncorp Stadium but they are up against Australia’s top team.
The Reds have played the Brumbies 28 times in Super Rugby and have won five matches, drawn one and lost 22.
We are waiting for the kick-off.
1.00: BEEP! BEEP! We are underway at Suncorp Stadium in the first game of the weekend. The Reds are playing in their new indigenous jersey. The conditions are slippery after some rain and both teams have already knocked on a couple of passes.
3.00: The pitch looks heavy and has resulted in some reset scrums. The Reds have won only three times this season, twice at home which is reflected in the empty stadium. Only the Rebels have won fewer games.
5.00: Quade Cooper kicks a long cross-field kick, but the ball sails over Eto Nabuli’s head and into touch. The Brumbies go to their driving maul, Joe Powell breaks blind, attempts a pass, but is tackled into touch.
8.00: Cooper covers at fullback, but a bad bounce sees the standoff knock on – very untidy work inside his 22 by the Wallaby. However, the danger is averted after referee Brendon Pickerill penalises the Brumbies’ front row for collapsing.
10.00: Henry Speight is tackled in the air and the Brumbies are awarded a penalty. Wharenui Hawera kicks to touch and the Brumbies go to their driving maul. Rory Arnold bashes into the defenders, loses the ball in the tackle and Karmichael Hunt clears the danger.
14.00: Some more poor handling from both teams, means more scrums. The field is cutting up with all the set pieces. Nabuli races away, but the ref calls play back for a forward pass by Duncan Paia’aua. It looked flat rather than forward. Unlucky for the Reds there.
17.00: Despite the wet conditions, the two sides are trying to play with width before going to the boot in search of territory. The Reds are punching their way up the field before kicking away possession. Speight gathers at the back and kicks a short touch-finder, giving the home team some good field position.
20.00: Oh dear. Aidan Toua chases a kick and knocks the ball forward when it seemed easier to score. The winger should have dived on the ball and his momentum would have taken him over the try line.
22.00: Stephen Moore is penalised for not supporting his body weight. Earlier, a Brumbies’ player was taken out without the ball. Hawera kicks to touch – the second time the visitors have not taken the points.
25.00: Scott Fardy loses the ball in contact. That’s the second time the points were turned down and an opportunity lost through poor handling. The Brumbies are looking frustrated. Taniela Tupou is then penalised for collapsing. Hawera will kick at goal, this time.
26.00: PENALTY! Wharenui Hawera slots the penalty and the Brumbies take the lead: 0-3
27.00: Rory Arnold charges down Copper’s kick, the ball is kicked forward, but the Reds get back in time to save the day.
31.00: The Brumbies go through the phases, but again, they give away another penalty, costing them field position, and Cooper can clear the danger. The Reds go to their driving maul and are marching the Brumbies backwards. They win a penalty after the visitors collapsed from the maul and Moore points at the poles.
33.00: PENALTY! Quade Cooper levels the scores: 3-3
35.00: Izaia Perese smashes Tom Banks, who was trying to run from his try line. The Brumbies regroup and clear the danger with another long kick behind the Reds. The home team run the ball back, going wide and sending the ball through the hands, however, Joe Powell gets a hand in the way and breaks up the play.
36.00: A heavy fog is descending over the ground as if the wet conditions were not enough. The Reds win a penalty for an early tackle without the ball by Sam Carter. Cooper will kick at goal.
38.00: PENALTY! Cooper, from in front and 37 metres, slots the penalty to give the Reds the lead: 6-3
39.00: Hunt takes the ball to the gain line, puts the ball to boot, but Tevita Kuridrani smashes the fullback with a big hit. The Reds come again, George Smith, who has carried well, does so again. The home team are getting forward, up the field, but another wayward kick relinquishes possession.
40.00: The Brumbies go to their driving maul, but it is halted by the Reds’ forwards, so Powell puts the ball into touch.
The half-time score was Reds 6 Brumbies 3
41.00: BEEP! BEEP! Wharenui Hawera restarts the second-half. The conditions are getting worse, the fog is thick and the ground is wet, which will make handling harder than the first 40 minutes. Very similar to the 2006 Super Rugby final between the Crusaders and Hurricanes at Jade Stadium in Christchurch.
44.00: The Reds have the scrum feed around halfway. They go wide, with runners off the shoulder, before Rob Simmons loses the ball in the contact. Had he looked left, he had an option to free some support players.
45.00: Chris Alcock is being helped off the field, he looks sore and is limping badly. Jarrad Butler replaces him at openside flank.
48.00: The two teams are struggling with their scrums. The field is cutting up and footing is slippery. We are having reset after reset. Eventually, the Brumbies win the penalty. They will go to the corner because they have the best rolling maul in the competition, scoring the most tries from it.
51.00: PENALTY TRY! The Reds are bulldozed by a beast of a rolling maul. George Smith and Stephen Moore enter from the side, but it’s the flanker who is sin-binned because he was the man who collapsed the maul one metres out: 6-10
51.00: YELLOW CARD! George Smith is off.
55.00: TRY Kyle Godwin! Quade Cooper gathers a kick, but Tom Banks tackles him over the in-goal area. Cooper, as he is turned over, loses the ball trying to offload and Godwin jumps on the loose ball for his second try of the season. That is the second time Cooper has lost the ball attempting to clean up a kick at the back: 6-15
56.00: MISS! Wharenui Hawera can’t add the conversion: 6-15
59.00: The Brumbies are finding their mojo. Some slick handling and offloading are causing the Reds all manner of problems. Ben Alexander comes on for his record 143rd Super Rugby cap for the Brumbies, overtaking George Smith. Tomas Cubelli, the diminutive Argentinian, comes on for his first game of the season, replacing Joe Powell.
61.00: Cooper kicks another long, raking cross-field kick, but the ball goes out. However, the Reds had the penalty advantage, so Cooper gets to put the ball out, 10 metres from the Brumbies’ line.
63.00: Wow! The Reds rumble the Brumbies backwards, but the visitors stop the maul on the try line. Great defence, they never collapsed the maul, only slowed it down and were able to get defenders around to redouble the defence. It’s held up, so scrum to the Reds, in good field position, five metres out and 15 metres from touch.
64.00: TIGHTHEAD! The Brumbies get a big shove and drive the Reds’ forwards backwards. Caleb Timu’s boot knocked the ball forward to the visitors, very unlucky, but that scrum was magnificent.
66.00: Cooper knocks an uncontested high ball forwards, giving the Brumbies possession. Cubelli kicks the loose ball forward but it’s over the dead ball line.
68.00: Campbell Magnay dumps Hawera on his back and a scuffle breaks out between the two. Tempers are at fever pitch in this derby.
69.00: The pitch is cutting up from the scrums. Some ground staff run on to repair the divots when the play is away from the previous set piece.
70.00: Time is ticking down for the Reds. They are struggling to get out of their half because of the Brumbies’ pressure in the set pieces and their own handling errors.
72.00: TRY Hamish Stewart! Duncan Paia’aua breaks down the field and takes the ball into the Brumbies’ 22. The Reds go through some quick phases before going wide. Karmichael Hunt throws a skip pass to George Smith and the flanker offloads inside to Stewart, who dives in to score. It was a pass between the oldest and the youngest Reds’ players and the first try in nearly 170 minutes for the home team against the Brumbies: 11-15
73.00: Cooper slots the conversion from near the sideline: 13-15
75.00: It is game on! The Brumbies attack wide, but are tackled into touch. The ball came off James Tuttle and then the Brumbies attempt a quick throw, however, the referee calls play back.
77.00: The Reds go to the boot from the scrum, Hunt kicks long and has pinned the visitors back on their 10 metres line. The Brumbies get the throw but lose the ball in the maul after being held up. Great work by the Reds.
79.00: Cooper charges forward and plays a wonderful inside pass back to Izaia Perese, who gets outside Jarred Butler, but the referee blows for a penalty for offside.
80.00: PENALTY! Cooper wins the game, ending a five-game losing drought against the Brumbies, and giving Rob Simmons the send off he deserves: 16-15
The final score is Reds 16 (6) Brumbies 15 (3)
Tries – Stewart
Pen – Cooper (3)
Con – Cooper
Cards – Smith (Yellow, 51st minute)
Tries – Penalty try, Godwin
Pen – Hawera
Referee: Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 1: Nic Berry
Assistant Ref 2: Rohan Hoffman
TMO: Ian Smith
15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Izaia Perese, 13 Campbell Magnay, 12 Duncan Paia’aua, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 James Tuttle, 8 Adam Korczyk, 7 George Smith, 6 Rob Simmons, 5 Izack Rodda, 4 Kane Douglas, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Stephen Moore (captain), 1 Sef Fa’agase.
Replacements: 16 Alex Mafi, 17 Markus Vanzati, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Caleb Timu, 21 Moses Sorovi, 22 Hamish Stewart, 23 Chris Kuridrani.
15 Tom Banks, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Aidan Toua, 10 Wharenui Hawera, 9 Joe Powell, 8 Jordan Smiler, 7 Chris Alcock, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter (captain), 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Josh Mann-Rea, 1 Scott Sio
Replacements: 16 Robbie Abel, 17 Les Makin, 18 Ben Alexander, 19 Blake Enever, 20 Jarrad Butler, 21 Tomas Cubelli, 22 Nigel Ah Wong, 23 Andrew Smith