Waratahs

Waratahs beat Reds to host Super 14 Semi-final

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The Waratahs secured second place on the table in their final round-robin match by beating the Reds in Brisbane.


The result means that the Waratahs are on 43 points on the table which means that they cannot be overtaken and will host the second semi-final against an opponent to be decided later today.

 

The Waratahs have not been beaten in 2008 in Sydney.

 


Lock Dean Mumm and No. 8 Wycliff Palu crossed in the first half for the Waratahs and winger Peter Hynes scored a consolation deep in injury time for the Reds – the only tries of a match that started shortly after a heavy downpour in Brisbane.


What was hyped as an attacking duel between two young and exciting flyhalves in Kurtley Beale and Quade Cooper amounted to little, with the match between the traditional Australian rivals degenerating into an armwrestle.


Waratahs flyhalf Beale missed three kickable penalties and a conversion in the first half, keeping the Reds in the match, while Cooper was unable to give the Reds’ attack any direction behind a scrum that was being barged around in the first half.


Referee Matt Goddard did not help the flow, blowing for a stream of free kicks and penalties at the breakdowns.


Beale missed two penalty attempts from 35 meters within three minutes before Mumm crossed in the 21st minute from close range to give the visitors the early edge.


Both sides were kicking for territory and hoping for mistakes from the opposition as defense took priority.


The Reds, who were out of semifinal contention but vowed to upset the Waratahs and stop their archrivals reaching the last four, closed the gap to 7-3 via Clinton Schifcofske’s penalty in the 35th minute.


But just on halftime, Palu rolled off the back of a maul after a lineout on the quarterline, caught the Reds defense dozing and ran 25 meters untouched for a soft try.


Beale’s conversion hit the upright, giving him 1-5 for the half.


Berrick Barnes took a left-foot dropped goal in the 45th minute to reduce the margin to 12-6. But that was as close as the hosts got.


Beale finally slotted a penalty in the 64th and added another two minutes later to make it 18-6 before the Reds’s late consolation as winger Hynes chased through a kick from Morgan Turinui after the siren to earn a bonus point.


“We knew it would be tough, we knew it wouldn’t be pretty but we hung in there,” Waratahs skipper Phil Waugh said.


“There’s a lot to work on but it’s great to be heading back to Sydney.”


The Waratahs won all six matches at home this season and won their last semifinal at home, against the Bulls in 2005, before losing the final to the Crusaders.


The Waratahs lost their last semifinal which was away from home, going down 16-14 away to the Hurricanes in 2006.


 

Final Score Reds 11 Waratahs 18

 

Scorers

 

Reds

Tries – Peter Hynes

Pen – Clinton Schifcofske

Con –
Drop – Berrick Barnes

 

Waratahs

Tries – Dean Mumm,  Wycliff Palu

Pen – Kurtley Beale (2)

Con – Kurtley Beale

 

Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Saturday May 17
Referee: Matt Goddard (Australia)
Assistant referees: James Leckie (Australia), Damian Mitchelmore (Australia)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)
Assessor: Wayne Erickson (Australia)
 

Teams

 

Reds

 

Clinton Schifcofske, Brando Va’aulu, Morgan Turinui, Berrick Barnes, Peter Hynes, Quade Cooper, Ben Lucas, Leroy Houston, David Croft, Poutasi Luafutu, James Horwill (c), Van Humphries, Dayna Edwards, Stephen Moore, Ben Coutts.

Reserves: Sean Hardman, Rodney Blake, Ed ODonoghue, Scott Higginbotham, Sam Cordingley, Charlie Fetoai, Caleb Brown.

 

Waratahs Squad

Backs (11): Kurtley Beale, Luke Burgess, Matt Carraro, Tom Carter, Sam Harris, Rob Horne, Sam Norton-Knight, Brett Sheehan, Timana Tahu, Lote Tuqiri, Lachie Turner.


Forwards (12): Al Baxter, Will Caldwell, Matt Dunning, Rocky Elsom, Adam Freier, David Lyons, Dean Mumm, Wycliff Palu, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Benn Robinson, Dan Vickerman, Phil Waugh [c].

 

Super14.com

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