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Brumbies power to victory over Highlanders

Sun, 24/04/2022, 5:47 am
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
The Highlanders headed to Melbourne looking for a much needed win against the high flying Brumbies.

An 18-point haul from Noah Lolesio has given the Brumbies a 28-17 victory over the Highlanders.

The visitors stunned the Highlanders early on and took a commanding lead thanks to two quick tries to Jahrome Brown and Lachlan Lonergan

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However, the Highlanders refused to go away in the contest thanks to Thomas Umaga-Jensen and James Lentjes.

In the end, a late try to the flyhalf sealed the victory as the Brumbies held out a late charge from the hosts.

The Brumbies looked unstoppable as the first half with the return of Lolesio proving deadly.

His pass to Tom Wright should have opened the scoring, however, the Wallaby somehow dropped the ball over the line with no-one around him.

Fortunately for the visitors, they crossed seven minutes as the relentless pressure from Jahrome Brown was rewarded with a try.

Lachlan Lonergan did what every good Brumbies hooker does as he dived over the line from the back of a rolling maul, rewarding their early dominance.

Nic White’s try minutes later was ruled out as the Highlanders found their way back into the contest through Peter Umaga-Jensen.

Lolesio, who entered the game kicking just 70% in 2022, was near-flawless with the boot as penalties before and after the break built a 20-7 lead.

Whilst James Lentjes crashed over six minutes later, the Brumbies remained composed and continued to add to the scoreboard whilst the Highlanders hunted for their third try.

Sam Gilbert looks to have pulled off try of the year after he latched onto a Umaga-Jensen grubber, however, the TMO judged the replacement back to have lost the ball.

This swung momentum back to Dan McKellar's men as a great run from Irae Simone burst the line, finding Lolesio in the corner to seal the victory.

Late charges from the Highlanders were foiled by a dominant Brumbies pack as they secured the victory.

It marks the first win for the Australian sides in Super Round after two early defeats to the Reds and Waratahs, with the Brumbies preparing to face the Hurricanes next week.

Meanwhile, the Highlanders face the tough task of heading to Fiji to face the Drua in a must-win clash if they wish to play finals.

BRUMBIES 28

TRIES: Brown, L.Lonergan, Lolesio

CONS: Lolesio 2/3

PENS: Lolesio 3/3

HIGHLANDERS 17

TRIES: Umaga-Jensen, Lentjes

CONS: Banks 2/2

PENS: Banks 1/1

HIGHLANDERS V BRUMBIES TEAMS

Highlanders: 15. Mitch Hunt, 14 Freedom Vahakolo, 13 Thomas Umaga-Jensen, 12 Fetula Paea, 11 Mosese Dawai, 10 Marty Banks, 9 Folau Fakatava, 8 Gareth Evans, 7 James Lentjes (c), 6 Hugh Renton, 5 Sam Caird, 4 Bryn Evans, 3 Jermaine Ainsley, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Ethan de Groot

Replacements: 16 Andrew Makailo, 17 Daniel Lienert-Brown, 18 Josh Hohneck, 19 Max Hicks, 20 Billy Harmon, 21 Kayne HImmington, 22 Sam Gilbert, 23 Christian Lio-Willie

Brumbies: 15 Tom Wright, 14 Cam Clark, 13 Len Ikitau, 12 Irae Simone, 11 Andy Muirhead, 10 Noah Lolesio, 9 Nic White (c), 8 Pete Samu, 7 Jahrome Brown, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Caderyn Neville, 4 Darcy Swain, 3 Sefo Kautai, 2 Lachlan Lonergan, 1 Scott Sio

Replacements: 16 Folau Fainga’a, 17 James Slipper, 18 Tom Ross, 19 Tom Hooper, 20 Luke Reimer, 21 Ryan Lonergan, 22 Rod Iona, 23 Hudson Creighton

Referee: Ben O’Keeffe

Assistant referees: Graham Cooper & Reuben Keane

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