Blues pip Brumbies in Super Rugby

The Auckland Blues have ended their seven-game winless streak to start the Super Rugby season by humbling the Brumbies 16-14 at Eden Park.

The contest was as close as the scoreline indicated, replacement five-eighth Ihaia West landing the decisive sideline penalty with three minutes to go.

The Brumbies had the chance to steal victory after the hooter from a scrum penalty, but halfback Nic White put his long-range attempt wide.

The Blues headed into the match on Friday night with a 0-7 record and sitting bottom of the table.

But with skipper Jerome Kaino leading from the front, they were able snap their losing run despite a jittery second half.

The Brumbies remain the Australian conference leaders despite a defeat in which they fell 13-0 behind at halftime, before producing a strong comeback.

The Brumbies’ lack of discipline cost them early as they conceded the first five penalties, allowing Dan Bowden to kick the Blues to a 6-0 lead.

The Brumbies also had to reshuffle their backline when No.10 Matt Toomua went off midway through the half with an ankle injury.

The Blues continued to have the better of the contest, midfielder George Moala causing problems with his direct running.

But a six-point margin didn’t seem enough reward until Bowden’s converted try from a dab off a ruck put them further ahead.

The Brumbies, for whom flanker David Pocock was huge at the break-down, came out with greater intensity in the second spell.

Christian Leali’ifano, who had moved into first receiver with Toomua’s departure, landed a penalty to put his side on the board.

The visitors further cut the deficit in the 57th minute after showing great patience in attack.

They strung together 25 phases, their forwards punching at the line, before White found unmarked winger Lausii Taliauli out wide to score.

The penalty count swung around against the Blues in the second period and two more Leali’ifano goals pushed the Brumbies in front with six minutes to go.

* All Offers and Promotions posted in this article excludes NSW residents.
Stay up to date with the latest sports news
Follow our social accounts to get exclusive content and all the latest sporting news!