Super Rugby

Waratahs beat Sunwolves in Tokyo




The Sunwolves and Waratahs have only met once before in Super Rugby and that match was won 12-57 by the Waratahs in Tokyo.

The Waratahs have played five matches this season, won three and drawn one. The Sunwolves have played five matches and have yet to win.

  • The Waratahs blazed to a 57-12 win against the Sunwolves in Round 15, 2016, the only previous meeting between these teams; at the time, it was the Japanese side’s biggest ever home loss (now 3rd biggest).
  • Sunwolves have lost seven of seven games against Australian opposition in Super Rugby, conceding at least 30 and an average of 43 points per game in those matches.
  • The Waratahs have won back to back matches and are looking to win a third on the bounce for the first time since April/May 2016 (W4), that was also the last time they won consecutive away games which is on the cards here too.
  • The Sunwolves have conceded a competition high 44 points and 6.6 tries per match this season.
  • Hosea Saumaki has the best average gain per carry of any of the 112 players to make 30+ carries this season (11.4m).

Match detail

We are waiting for the kick off. It’s a little windy in Tokyo today. The teams are on the field.

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

The Sunwolves kick off – high into the breeze – and the match is underway.

The ball is knocked on after the kick off. The Waratahs win the first scrum and run the ball but then the ball goes into touch.

2.00: The line out is taken quickly and the Waratahs get to about 10m where they concede a penalty.

3.00: The Sunwolves take a quick tap but they are called back so they kick for touch and take the line out option.

5.00 : The Waratahs spread the ball wide to Taqele Naiyaravoro who brushes off four tackles, offloads to Bernard Foley who passes to Jake Gordon who scores the first TRY!

7.00: Foley adds the conversion.

9.00: The Sunwolves go on the attack and get to the Waratahs 5m line.  The Sunwolves test the Waratahs who concede a penalty. The Sunwolves take the scrum as their penalty.

10.00: The Sunwolves win the scrum, they go through two phases and Michael Little is tackled but he gets back up and goes again for the line and scores as he was not held. TRY! 

11.00:  Yu Tamura adds the conversion.

14.00: Penalty to the Waratahs. Foley lines up the posts, he nails it.

16.00: The Waratahs move the ball wide again and this time the Sunwolves expect them to go wide to the wings but Curtis Rona slips through a gap and races for the line and scores. TRY!

17.00: Foley adds the conversion.

19.00: The Sunwolves run the ball and attack the Waratahs. The ball goes to ground and the Waratahs (Ned Hanigan) grab it and Will Miller runs for the line and scores. TRY! 

20.00: Foley again adds the conversion.

22.00: The Sunwolves run the ball from their tryline. Little sells a dummy and slices through the Waratahs. He races down the wing and beats everyone but Bryce Hegarty comes across so he offloads to Sam Wykes who scores. TRY!

24.00: Tamura adds the conversion.

26.00: Penalty to the Sunwolves as Semisi Masirewa is tackled in the air. The Sunwolves take the scrum option.

27.00: Scrum penalty to the Sunwolves. This time they will kick for posts. Tamura nails it.

31.00: The Sunwolves run the ball into the Waratahs 22. The Waratahs however turn the ball over and boot it upfield. The Waratahs regain the ball and this time they boot the ball into touch. The ball has gone from the Waratahs 22 to the Sunwolves 22.

34.00: The Waratahs win a scrum inside the Sunwolves 22. Gordon picks the ball up at the back of the scrum and darts for the line and scores. TRY!

35.00: Foley slots the conversion.

39.00: The Waratahs work the ball back into the Sunwolves 22. They go through several phases and Kurtley Beale offloads to Bryce Hegarty who slips through and scores. TRY!

40.00: Foley adds the conversion.

It’s half time. Five tries to two.

The half time score was Sunwolves 17 Waratahs 38

Foley kicks off and the second half is underway.

43.00: The Waratahs win a line out and use the maul. They drive over the line and Michael Hooper scores the first try of the second half. TRY!

45.00: Bernard Foley takes the conversion. He misses.

48.00: The Sunwolves chip the ball ahead and chase. It;s a foot race but the Waratahs get back and the ball goes dead.

51.00: The ball is being thrown about by both sides with intercepts on both sides. Both sides run the ball when they get it but lose it. The Waratahs knock on and the Sunwolves are allowed to play on. Semisi Masirewa dodges Beale and then races for the line and scores. TRY! 

52.00: Tamura misses the conversion.

58.00: The Sunwolves are keeping the Waratahs pinned in their 22. The Sunwolves win a penalty from the scrum and they take another scrum. The Waratahs get a warning.

59.00: The Waratahs turn the tables on the Waratahs and they win the scrum and boot the ball all the way downfield for a penalty kick.

63.00: The Sunwolves get the ball on attack and then get the overlap. They run for the line but instead of going wide the Sunwolves cut back in and they go for the line but is held up. 5m scrum.

64.00: The Sunwolves win the scrum and press forward to the line. Waratahs captain Hooper is yellow carded for foul play. The Sunwolves take the scrum option in front of the posts. (22-43)

The Sunwolves win the scrum and slip off the back – where Hooper would have been – and goes for the line to score. TRY!

68.00: Tamura adds the conversion. Ed Quirk comes on for the Sunwolves.

70.00: The Sunwolves run the ball and look to be open but Little slips a pass behind him and it goes forward. The Sunwolves could have scored from the attack but they get called back for the pass.

72.00: The Waratahs run the ball and Taqele Naiyaravoro powers through the tackles as they come and he gets away and scores the Waratahs 7th TRY!

73.00: Foley slots the conversion.

78.00: The match has slowed as neither team wants to concede any more points.

80.000: The siren sounds for full time and the Waratahs win a penalty from the scrum. Foley boots the ball into touch to end the contest.

The Waratahs have won.

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The full time score is Sunwolves 29 (17) Waratahs 50 (38) 


Tries – M. Little, S. Wykes, S. Masirewa, K.Himeno
Pen – Y.Tamura
Con – Y.Tamura 3
Drop –
Cards –

Tries – J.Gordon 2, C. Rona, W.Miller, B.Hegarty, M.Hooper, T.Naiyaravoro
Pen – B.Foley
Con – B.Foley 6
Drop –
Cards – M.Hooper (64th min yellow)

Match Officials
Referee: Angus Gardner
Assistant Ref 1:Shuhei Kubo
Assistant Ref 2:Tasuku Kawahara
TMO : Minoru Fuji



15 Kotaro Matsushima, 14 Lomano Lemeki, 13 Timothy Lafaele, 12 Michael Little, 11 Semisi Masirewa, 10 Yu Tamura, 9 Yutaka Nagare (captain), 8 Kazuki Himeno, 7 Lappies Labuschagne, 6 Yoshitaka Tokunaga, 5 Sam Wykes, 4 James Moore, 3 Jiwon Koo, 2 Shota Horie, 1 Craig Millar

Replacements :16 Jaba Bregvadse, 17 Keita Inagaki, 18 Nikoloz Khatiashvili, 19 Wimpie van der Walt, 20 Edward Quirk, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Hayden Parker, 23 Hosea Saumaki


1. Tom Robertson, 2. Damien Fitzpatrick, 3. Sekope Kepu, 4. Ned Hanigan, 5. Rob Simmons, 6. Will Miller , 7. Michael Hooper (c) 8. Michael Wells, 9. Jake Gordon, 10. Bernard Foley (vc) 11. Taqele Naiyaravoro, 12. Kurtley Beale, 13. Curtis Rona, 14. Alex Newsome, 15. Bryce Hegarty,

Replacements : 16. Hugh Roach, 17. Harry Johnson-Holmes, 18. Paddy Ryan, 19. Tom Staniforth, 20. Jed Holloway , 21. Mitchell Short, 22. Lalakai Foketi, 23. Cameron Clark

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