The Plus500 Brumbies have bounced back from last week’s loss in Christchurch to beat the Lions 31-20 at GIO Stadium.
After conceding the first try the Brumbies never looked back, racing out to an 11 point lead at half time which they held onto through the second half.
Playing his 50th super rugby match with the Brumbies, Joe Powell put in a stellar performance to earn man of the match including a try assist and three broken tackles.
Less than five minutes into the game Tom Wright received a yellow card for putting Lion’s captain Malcolm Marx in a dangerous position and the visitors didn’t take long to capitalise on their numerical advantage through electrifying winger Aphiwe Dyantyi.
The try went unconverted but it was a great example of what the Lions can do if given enough space.Ten minutes later Dyantyi ran from his left wing to make a try saving tackle on Tom Banks near the right touchline, but it was not enough to stop Lachlan McCaffrey from burrowing over in the ensuing play.
Christian Lealiifano swung the conversion through the posts from out wide to take his team to a 7-5 lead.Some good phase play by the Brumbies resulted in Toni Pulu receiving a great pass and again proving he is one of the fastest men in Australian rugby, streaking down the flank to score in the corner.
Lealiifano had another conversion attempt from virtually the same spot as his last and the result was the same.
An unconverted try to Tevita Kuridrani just before half time sent the Brumbies into the break with a handy 19-8 lead, but it didn’t take the visitors long to strike back in the second half. Elton Jantjies swooped on a loose ball and left Tom Banks wrong-footed to dot down under the posts.
With the Brumbies lead cut to just four points the pressure was on, but some neat passing out to the right wing sent Banks over for a well-deserved try. Just minutes later Wright made a darting run from outside the 22 to score in a very similar position, and all of a sudden the score was back out to a comfortable 31-15.
The men from Johannesburg fought back in the period following, eventually being rewarded with a try in the corner to replacement wing Sylvian Mahuza. However, with less than ten minutes to play it looked like the Brumbies would be able to hold them off.
The win put the Brumbies into third in the Australian conference just one point behind the NSW Waratahs.
Next week the Canberra team travels to Cape Town to play the Stormers who emphatically beat the Melbourne Rebels 41-24 on Friday.
STATISTICSBrumbies: (19) 31 (T: McCaffrey, Pulu, Kuridrani, Banks, Wright C: Lealiifano 3/5)
Lions: (8) 20 (T: Dyantyi, Jantjies, Mahuza C: Jantjies 1/3 P: Jantjies 1/1)