'Incredible' defence gives Brumbies victory at Newlands

'Incredible' defence gives Brumbies victory at Newlands

Magnificent defending for long periods and opportunism on the rare occasions they attacked earned the Brumbies a 19-17 Super Rugby victory over the Stormers in Cape Town on  Saturday.

Brumbies vs Stormers
Photo: AFP Tevita Kuridrani of the Brumbies fights for the ball during the SuperRugby match between South Africa's Stormers and Australia's Brumbies at Newlands Stadium in Cape Town on April 20, 2019.

Luck was also on the side of the Australian tourists as the South Africans spurned numerous kickable penalties at Newlands stadium, preferring scrums and line-outs.

In an unusual end to the first half, some of the Brumbies players were in the tunnel leading to the changing rooms before being called back onto the field by referee Nick Briant.
A high tackle on a Stormer was spotted by the television match official after the Briant blew for half-time, and the South Africans were awarded a penalty try while visiting winger Toni Pulu was sin-binned.
The Brumbies had their lead reduced to 12-10 as they trooped off the pitch a second time and fell five points behind when a 45th-minute Wilco Louw try was converted by Josh Stander.
What proved the crucial score came on 58 minutes when unmarked Tom Banks casually crossed the line after a lofted miss-pass from skipper Christian Lealiifano, who converted the try.
"It was an incredible defensive effort from my boys," said Lealiifano as the Brumbies won away for the first time this season after four losses on the road.
"The Stormers kept coming at us, applying immense pressure, and we gave an epic performance to keep them out.
"I thought the contest between the packs was awesome, especially at the scrums. Winning this match will give us massive confidence going forward." 
Stormers skipper Steven Kitshoff defended his decisions to repeatedly opt for set-pieces when awarded penalties instead of kicking for goal.
"I believed we could score tries from the set-pieces and that influenced my decision making. We spent so much time inside their 22 and would have won had the chances been taken. 
"The outcome hinged on execution. The Brumbies took the few chances they had and we scored less points from far more opportunities," said Kitshoff.

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