The Super Rugby AU regular season concludes with a Super Saturday double-header. The Rebels need a win over the Force, while the second encounter is a top-two showdown.
History: Played 12: Rebels 8 V Force 4
Last meeting: July 31, 2020: Rebels 25 d Force 20 (golden point) at Leichhardt Oval
Final Thoughts: The equation is simple for the Rebels: win and they’re into next weekend’s 2 v 3 qualifying final, leapfrogging the Waratahs. Lose and their season is over. The Rebels were unable to clinch their playoffs spot last week, their second-half comeback falling short in a 38-32 loss to the ’Tahs.
The Force are staring down the barrel of a winless return to Super Rugby life, losing all seven games. They have scored a competition-low 11 tries and conceding a competition-high 29. After leading at the half-hour mark last Friday, they were overwhelmed by the Brumbies 31-14.
The Force’s nearest miss came against the Rebels in Round 5, foiled by Isi Naisarani’s golden point try after the teams were locked at 20-all at the 80-minute mark.
The Rebels welcome Wallabies star Dane Haylett-Petty back from injury, which should provide them with extra impetus in a match where motivation should be no issue. The Force don’t have the attacking firepower to compete.
19:20 (AEST), Sat 5th Sep @ Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
History: Played 34: Brumbies 25 V Reds 8 (1 Draw)
Last meeting: August 1, 2020: Brumbies 22 d Reds 20 at GIO Stadium
Final Thoughts: The Brumbies and Reds are already locked into first and second with one round to play. But there’s a psychological edge ahead of a potential final showdown in a fortnight’s time up for grabs.
The 6-1 Brumbies overcame a sluggish start against the Force to run in five tries in a 31-14 win, sealing top spot. Winger Tom Wright kick-started the Brumbies’ scoring with his sixth try of the Super Rugby AU season.
The Reds had the Round 9 bye after demolishing the Force 57-5 a week earlier. Filipo Daugunu scored a first-half double, while Tate McDermott ran in two tries in the second stanza. James O’Connor bagged 22 points.
The Brumbies boast an 11-5-1 record on the road against the Reds. But the Reds have not lost at Suncorp this year.
Tevita Kuridrani and Nic White return for a Brumbies side that is irresistible at near even-money, despite the dead-rubber nature of the contest.