Brumbies continue to dominate Australian Conference with easy victory over poor Rebels.By Mark Ella

The Rebels went to Canberra last weekend with high hopes after a convincing victory against the Auckland Blues at Easter but unfortunately for them the ACT Brumbies saved their best for the Melbourne team winning 37-6.

Unlike most teams in the Australian conference the Brumbies have only a handful of Wallabies in their line-up but under the tuition and control of Jake White they are leading the way after Round 8 of the Super Rugby competition.

Scoring four first half tries to secure a bonus point was a fantastic effort and they certainly hit the ground running and never allowed the Rebels to get into the game such was their domination particularly in the first half.

The aggressive Brumbies forwards man handled the Rebels eight who were soft and made it hard for their star studded back line to get any momentum at all.

Having quality players like Danny Cipriani, James O'Connor, Mark Gerrard and Kurtley Beale means nothing if they don't have the football in their hands and they did more tackling in this match than should have.

The Rebels chances of defeating the Brumbies were always at long odds and unfortunately their victory over the Blues a couple of weeks ago gave a false indication of where they are at right now simply because the Blues were atrocious resembling nothing of their past glories.

And when the Rebels did get some possession they quickly turned the football over with some sloppy passing with no go forward making the fancy Rebels back line look ordinary and out of kilter with each other.

James O'Connor who dominated proceeding last weekend against the Blues had little impact on the game as did Kurtley Beale but with their forwards struggling to secure much possession it was always going to be long day in the office for the talented duo.

The Brumbies to their credit are playing way above their weight at the moment and deserve to be at the top of the Australian conference if only for the belief and trust that they have in each other.

Playing a direct game with centre Pat McCabe knowing only way to run made it easy for five eighth Christian Lealiifano to concentrate on other parts of his game and it wouldn't surprise me if Wallabies coach Robbie Deans gave him a phone call later on in the year.

The Rebels will continue to be chicken fodder for most of the teams in this competition until they get more bigger and stronger forwards because without the football even the greatest back line in the world is reduced to being spectators.

At half time the match stats showed that the Brumbies had controlled the break down with the mauls and rucks going the Brumbies way 56 - 18 with the Rebels also making the Brumbies attack look good missing 14 tackles in the first half which is why the Rebels trailed the Brumbies 30-6.

Perhaps the writing was on the wall when Pat McCabe ran straight over the top of James O'Connor from five metres out to score the Brumbies first try of the game after eleven minutes of play.

The Brumbies went on the score five tries to nil with Michael Hooper, captain Ben Mowen and Scott Fardy scoring twice joining McCabe on the scoreboard to defeat the Rebels so convincingly that it will be back for the drawing board for Rebels coach Damien Hill.

It will be hard for the likes of Beale and O'Connor to be on the loosing side almost every weekend but they better get used to it because victories will be far and few between which I hope will give them added cause to strive harder for success when they run out in the green and gold later this year.
The Rebels will get another drubbing on the weekend when they play the Waratahs in Sydney on Saturday and the Brumbies will have a much harder task facing the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld in South Africa but playing a disciplined game will make their odds of success so much better.

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