Tuesday, March 29, 2011
The Melbourne Rebels pulled off their second big upset in their short Super Rugby history, as they produced a stirring comeback to beat the Hurricanes 42-25 in front of their home crowd on Saturday.
Trailing 17-0 after just 18 minutes, it looked as though it would be a repeat of Round 5s hiding as the Rebels struggled to get to grips with the powerful Wellington side, who had a whole host of All Blacks in their armoury.
They eventually got into the game though with a try to Rodney Rodzilla Blake, and from then on the comeback was sparked as they played some fantastic rugby, with Stirling Mortlock having his best game of the season, and foreign imports Gareth Delve, Michael Lipman, and Danny Cipriani all playing their part.
Scrumhalf Nick Phipps was also a stand-out, and by the time he scored late in the match, it was all over for the visiting Canes, who simply couldnt deal with the continuity and free flowing style of the Melbourne newcomers.
Coach Rod Macqueen was impressed by his sides six tries, but realises that consistency is needed if they are to become a real factor in this tournament.
"That's what we're striving to do, we just need to do more of it. Next week we've got to front up again. It's a very tough competition," he said
"The reality is that everything's new to this side, everyone's coming together for the first time and to an extent, everything's a bit of an experiment. The biggest thing is getting a group of players together that haven't played with each other before and then each week it changes again because of injuries."
The Rebels travel to Perth in Round 7 to face the Western Force for an all Aussie derby.