Canes beat Brumbies in rugby quarter-final

Jul 21, 2017 - 11:34 PM A dominant second-half performance from the Hurricanes has ended Brumbies coach Stephen Larkham's reign at the club, with his side brave during their 35-16 Super Rugby quarter-final defeat.

The home side went to the break leading by one point and showed dogged determination throughout Friday night's match in front of 9771 in Canberra.

But they simply couldn't get out of their own territory in the second half.

"We spoke at half time about trying to get out of our end and trying to be a little bit more aggressive coming out of our end. We failed to do that in the second half," said Larkham, who will now take up a full-time role with the Wallabies.

"There was no doubt that the guys worked and put as much effort as they could we just didn't execute when we needed to."

Despite dominating possession, the Hurricanes could only muster two Jordie Barrett penalty goals in the first 25 minutes after the break.

But the dam wall finally burst on the 70-minute mark with Dane Coles, playing his first game since March, setting up halfback TJ Perenara who crossed before Barrett added the extras to make it 28-16.

Hurricanes winger Wes Goosen put the result beyond doubt with his second try of the night.

The Brumbies' defeat means Australian franchises lost all 26 Super Rugby matches against New Zealand opposition in 2017.

Brumbies co-captain Christian Lealiifano replaced the concussed James Dargaville at halftime, completing a remarkable comeback less than a year after being diagnosed with leukaemia.

But he was denied a fairytale return by opponents who were simply too good.

It was mission accomplished for the Hurricanes, but coach Chris Boyd was unimpressed with the style of the win.

"I think it’s our poorest performance of the last three games we’ve played," Boyd said.

"We can’t walk away being happy from that performance because at times we were terrible and at times were sort of OK. We won ugly."

The Brumbies bounced out of the blocks with Dargaville getting on the end of a sweeping ball to score the opening try after three minutes.

The visitors hit back soon after through Goosen who stepped through three players to level the scores.

A trademark Brumbies rolling maul drove over the line after 15 minutes, with the TMO awarding Josh Mann-Rea the try to give the home side a 13-5 lead.

The Brumbies were desperately unlucky to concede after 26 minutes when a Perenara pass ricocheted off Ben May’s head and fell to Barrett, who crossed before adding the points to shave the deficit to one point.

A yellow card to Jeffery Toomaga-Allen after the break helped the Brumbies stay in the contest.

But despite their numerical advantage, the Hurricanes took the lead through a penalty goal and kept the Brumbies scoreless in the second half.

The Hurricanes will play the winner of the Lions-Sharks quarter-final in next week's semi-final.

Source: AAP

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