Almanac Rugby: Super Rugby AU Rd 6/ Aotearoa Rd 5

In the Australian competition, both frontrunners flexed their muscles. Across the Tasman, the Chiefs continued their resurgence and in the other game another special fullback matched, and then exceeded, the efforts of Damian McKenzie last week.


Brumbies 42 Force 14

The Brumbies established their dominance early and never really let up. There were some passages of play where the Force looked threatening but the hosts continued their dominance when playing in Canberra.


The total team rugby the Brumbies play should be a blueprint for all of our teams. They do not rely too heavily on any player or any particular route to points. While the driving maul is still prominent in their game plan, Dan Mackellar broadens the scope of their options with each passing week.


Reds 46 Waratahs 14

The Reds were expected to assert themselves as quickly as the Brumbies did in their game. However, a bit more gumption from the boys from Sydney stemmed the flow of points initially. It felt as it would be difficult to sustain and that proved to be the case.


Like the Brumbies coach, Brad Thorn has a well structured development plan for his charges too. The Queenslanders are proving to be a bit more adventurous with ball in hand and it is paying dividends at the moment. It is pleasing to see our two best teams willing to take the game on.


That should help get more fans excited for the upcoming test matches. Of the 40 man Wallabies squad named the other day, there are 14 from the Brumbies and 12 from the Reds. It is a fitting testament to the position they hold. It was pleasing to see 7 Rebels players also named.


Hurricanes 30 Highlanders 19

Jordie Barrett must have looked at Damian McKenzie’s herculean efforts in Round 4 and said “that all you got?”


The Hurricanes fullback put on a superb masterclass in Dunedin scoring all 30 points. I waxed lyrically about Richie Mo’unga last week staking his claim to being the best player in the world. Well the highlights reel from Barrett stacks up very nicely than you very much.


There are many features of NZ rugby to admire but the way their champions step up on occasion and play out of their skins is one I covet so much for our game here.


Chiefs 15 Blues 12

Good grinding win for the Chiefs as they look to turn the corner and become a force once again. The Blues, meanwhile, still have the foundations to build a campaign but seem a bit flat footed at this stage of the tournament.


The NZ matches this weekend are of no special note on paper while the Tahs have to haul their sorry carcasses to the SCG to face the Brumbies without a coach. Rob Penney got the heave-ho the other day. The Rebels v Reds match at The Stockade should be a beauty.



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Grew up playing the rugby codes in suburban Sydney. Moved to Melbourne during the Carey era so becoming a Shinboner was the natural call. Still love the game they play in heaven. Took an interest in MLB a few years back and have become infatuated with America's pastime.

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