Wow!! What an afternoon it has been for the Brumbies who got away with the win against the Blues from Auckland at AAMI Park. The opening 40 was a close one where the Brumbies fired off really well while the Blues showed some fight along the way; both teams were level not long before half-time but Brumbies held a narrow lead at the break, 20-25. Although they both didn’t score anything throughout the second half, but the Brumbies have held out strong once again. They’ve been undefeated so far after Week 2 of 15 under the guidance of Head Coach Stephen Larkham in his second spell here.
Commiserations from the runner-up side following a red-hot start last Saturday in a 20-60 win v Highlanders. Their first half isn’t bad despite losing 2 players for a while (sin bin), especially when they responded well to the Brumbies’ early lead by closing them in with a couple of tries & conversions. They were almost there at one point when trying to get past the best Australian Super Rugby side at the moment, but then a mix of ill-discipline & a lopsided finishing going forward saw them struggle to unlock that key numerous times before it was too late. It’s been a hard pill to swallow today but a win v Brumbies again & then again if they meet in the Finals at some point, plus the Crusaders maybe on all three match-ups this year would hopefully see them go one better when it comes to the silverware.
And hats off to the Brumbies on a flying start to their 2023 SR campaign, even though there was a change of Head Coach lately. Love the Brums’ strong start & response against one of the Top 2 Kiwi sides when looking to stay ahead by not letting the Blues take the lead baton off their watch. Although there was nothing much happening later on after the break, but they did an excellent job by forming a strong defense + discipline that left the Blues attackers being frustrated while marching their way towards the winners’ circle. How good was that!! as we could see an Australian SR champion at last bar the domestic-based comp since the Waratahs back in 2014 which was nearly one decade ago. No other non-NZ Super Rugby side has won a Final since 2015.
For now, thanks Melbourne for being a great host throughout this weekend’s Super Round at AAMI Park where we’ve witnessed some excellent Rugby over the last three days all on the one venue. Let’s see if the Super Round next year will end up back in Melbourne again or else try at a new venue somewhere in Australia or New Zealand, as we now move onto Round 3 of 15 that will resume over Friday night & most of Saturday.