Super Rugby

Waratahs beat Rebels in Sydney



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The first Sunday Super Rugby match this year is in Sydney where the Waratahs host Melbourne’s Rebels at the Allianz Stadium.

These teams have played each other 13 times since the Rebels joined Super Rugby in 2011 and the Waratahs have won 11 matches and lost two.

  • The Waratahs have won 11 of their previous 13 meetings between these teams, managing to pick up a losing bonus point in their only two losses to the Rebels.
  • The Waratahs have scored only five first-half tries in their last six games, failing to find the whitewash in the opening stanza twice in that time.
  • The Rebels will be looking for back-to-back wins away from home for the first time since Round 6, 2016, which included a 21-17 win over the ‘Tahs.
  • The Waratahs are the only team yet to miss an attempt at goal; the Highlanders (92%) are the only other team with a goal kicking accuracy above 90%.
  • Sefanaia Naivalu has an average gain of 16 metres per carry this season, the most of any player in the competition to have made at least 10 carries.

Match detail

We are waiting for the kick-off.

1.00: PEEEEP! We are underway in a scorching Sydney. The temperature is 37 degrees Celsius. 

3.00: Jed Holloway intercepts Marika Koroibete’s inside pass. The Rebels have the lineout on halfway.

4.00: The Waratahs have made four changes to the team with a positional change. Israel Folau is on the right wing.

5.00: TRY! Tom English is in after Kurtley Beale is put under pressure by Folau’s bullet-pass, which ricochet off the centre and into the arms of English. It was a gift. 0-5

6.00: MISS! Reece Hodge can’t add the extras. 0-5

9.00: The Tahs are on the attack, but Holloway is stripped of possession. The Rebels counter-attack but the ball is lost forward.

10.00: Sekope Kepu is having trouble with his right leg. He is back after the red card against Scotland in the Autumn Internationals.

13.00: Dane Haylett-Petty is down after Folau ran over him. The Tahs are on the attack, but the referee has stopped the game for player welfare.

14.00: The fullback appeared to be knocked out when his head hit Folau’s hip. He won’t return, today.

15.00: The Waratahs get a penalty after the Rebels are pinged for not releasing at the ruck.

16.00: PENALTY! Bernard Foley slots the easy kick; he’s 15 from 15, this season. 3-5

18.00: Will Genia kicks the penalty into the corner.

19.00: Big defence by the home team, stopping the Rebels’ driving maul. They win the scrum and clear.

20.00: No TRY! Reece Hodge dives over, stretching to score, but loses the ball forward before regathering. The siren sounds for a water break due to the high weather temperature.

22.00: Ned Hanigan is pinged for a side entry to the maul. Hodge calls for the tee.

23.00: PENALTY! Hodge extends the visitor’s lead. 3-8

24.00: Genia is penalised for touching the ball in an offsides position after a floated restart by Foley.

25.00: MISS! Foley misses his first kick of the season, hitting the post. The Waratahs regather and are still on the attack.

26.00: Rob Simmons knocks on with the try-line at his mercy. To be fair, he was tackled as he touched the ball.

27.00: TRY! Amanaki Mafi is in for his fourth Super Rugby try. It came from Jack Debreczeni keeping the ball alive with a good pop-pass. Mafi went 60 metres. 3-13

29.00: CONVERSION! Hodge slots the kick. 3-15

30.00: Mafi is averaging 92 run-metres per game. Wow! Simmons is caught in front of Foley’s restart. Scrum to the Rebels in midfield. Jermaine Ainsley is pinged for collapsing the scrum.

31.00: Foley kicks to the Rebels’ 22.

32.00: Hanigan bounces Hodge. The Tahs are on the attack, just inside the Rebels’ 22, but they are going nowhere.

33.00: The Rebels win the ball, but lose it forward. Scrum to the home team in good position.

34.00: Foley goes route one, but is stripped by Debreczeni in the tackle. Hodge clears the danger.

36.00: Curtis Rona takes Genia’s up-and-under. The ball is then kicked deep into Rebels’ territory but returned with interest by Billy Meakes.

37.00: TRY! Jack Maddocks scores his fifth try in four games. Meakes steps Bryce Hegarty and pops to the supporting Maddocks. 3-20

38.00: MISS! Hodge pulls his conversion attempt. 3-20

39.00: TRY! Lalakai Foketi starts and finishes the move. Beale broke the line, played the supporting Damien Fitzpatrick, who drew his man and offloaded to Foketi. 8-20

40.00: CONVERSION! Foley adds the extras. 10-20

The half-time score was Waratahs 10 Rebels 20

41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in Sydney. 

42.00: Both teams playing aerial ping-pong, in the early stages of the second half.

43.00: TRY! Rob Simmons dots down. It started with Izzy Folau’s high take and offload to Michael Hooper. Hegarty broke the line, played Fitzpatrick, who popped to Simmons, on his shoulder. 15-20

44.00: CONVERSION! Foley adds another two. 17-20

45.00: That was Simmons’ first try since 2015 when he played for the Reds.

49.00: TRY! Mitch Short is over! Hodge takes a highball, but the ball is won by Hooper and Fitzpatrick. The Tahs send the ball wide to Rona, who steps inside and plays Short. 22-20

50.00: CONVERSION! Foley hits his third conversion. 24-20

54.00: PENALTY! Foley extends the Waratahs’ lead to seven. 27-20

55.00: The Tahs get a penalty after Matt Philip played Ross Haylett-Petty in the air.

56.00: TRY! Bryce Hegarty is over in the corner. Michael Wells breaks two tackles, Beale plays Hegarty, on the touchline, and the fullback is in for his team’s fourth. 32-20

57.00: CONVERSION! Foley’s sideline kick is in-off the left-hand upright. 34-20

58.00: TRY! Taqele Naiyaravoro is over in the corner after some wonderful offloads and handling. 39-20

60.00: CONVERSION! Foley adds the extras. 41-20

61.00: Water break.

63.00: TRY! Matt Philip is over for his first try of the season. The lock took the offload from Meakes, who danced past a couple of defenders. 41-25

64.00: CONVERSION! Hodge adds the extras. 41-27

67.00: Rona clears the danger.

69.00: We are having some scrum resets. The players are tiring in the summer sun.

72.00: A late tackle by Philip on Foley gives the Tahs a chance to extend their lead and close this game out.

73.00: PENALTY! Foley slots the penalty. 44-27

79.00: TRY! Naiyaravoro is in for his second, beating three defenders while dancing on the touchline. 49-27

81.00: CONVERSION! Foley slots the sideline kick. 51-27


In the meantime why not have a look at the match preview.

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The final score: Waratahs 51 (10) Rebels 27 (20)


Tries – Foketi, Simmons, Short, Hegarty, Naiyaravoro (2)
Pen – Foley (3)
Con – Foley (6)
Drop –
Cards –

Tries – English, Mafi, Maddocks, Philip
Pen – Hodge
Con – Hodge (2)
Drop –
Cards –

Match Officials
Referee: Brendan Pickerill
Assistant Ref 1: Federico Anselmi
Assistant Ref 2: Graham Cooper
TMO: Damien Mitchelmore



15 Bryce Hegarty, 14 Israel Folau, 13 Lalakai Foketi, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Curtis Rona, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Mitch Short, 8 Jed Holloway, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Michael Wells, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Ned Hanigan, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Damien Fitzpatrick, 1 Tom Robertson.

Replacements: 16 Hugh Roach, 17 Harry Johnson-Holmes, 18 Paddy Ryan, 19 Tom Staniforth, 20 Will Miller, 21 Mick Snowden, 22 Alex Newsome, 23 Taqele Naiyaravoro.


15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Jack Maddocks, 13 Tom English, 12 Reece Hodge, 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Will Genia, 8 Amanaki Mafi, 7 Ross Haylett-Petty, 6 Lopeti Timani, 5 Adam Coleman (captain), 4 Matt Philip, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Anaru Rangi, 1 Tetera Faulkner.

Replacements: 16 Mahe Vailanu, 17 Ben Daley, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Colby Fainga’a, 20 Richard Hardwick, 21 Michael Ruru, 22 Billy Meakes, 23 Sefa Naivalu.

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