Brumbies On The Brink Of Decider

Image courtesy of couriermail.com.au/Anish Debiky/AFP
Jesse Mogg has been a revelation for the Brumbies this season. Photo: AFP/Anish Debiky
The ACT Brumbies  will be bidding to reach the Super Rugby decider for the first time since 2004 when they tackle the Bulls  at Loftus Versfeld in the early hours of Sunday morning (AEST). Since reaching the final four times between 2000 and 2004, the Brumbies struggled to match it with the competitions big boys but have enjoyed something of a renaissance under South African mentor Jake White but face a tough task against the Bulls.

The Bulls earnt a short break last week after finishing the regular season on top of the Super Rugby table with 12 wins from fifteen matches but suffered a 30-13 defeat to the Stormers at Cape Town in their most recent outing. Jan Serfontein , Francois Hougaard and Paul Willemse all return to the host’s squad after missing that fixture through injury as the club bids to extend its unbeaten record at home during the campaign to nine matches.

The Brumbies have named the same squad that battled past the Cheetahs 15-13 in Canberra last weekend and will be much better for that outing given it was only the second match that the franchise has played since the start of June. Clyde Rathbone  and George Smith are the only survivors from the last ACT outfit that was successful in Pretoria, way back in 2006.

When these sides met at Canberra Stadium in March, the Brumbies triumphed 23-20 thanks to an 80th minute penalty goal from Christian Leali'ifano. Although the Australian side hasn’t won at Loftus Versfeld for nine years, the last time they played there they outscored the Bulls five tries to two but went down 36-34, with Morne Steyn kicking 23 points including seven penalties.

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