Cipriani stars in Rebels defeat
February 11, 2012
Danny Cipriani set-up two tries in teh Rebels defeat © Getty Images
Danny Cipriani turned in a fine performance for the Melbourne Rebels in a Super Rugby trial match against the Blues.
The former England fly-half played the opening 50 minutes alongside new Rebels recruits James O'Connor and Kurtley Beale at the AAMI Park stadium. Although the Rebels slipped to a 31-21 defeat, Cipriani showed some terrific touches in attack and pulled off a try-saving tackle.
Cipriani's break down the left flank set up their first try for winger Cooper Vuna. The fly-half then chipped a cross-field kick for Mark Gerrard to score their second try as the Rebels built up a 15-0 lead. However the Blues roared back with two tries from All Black Isaia Toeava as well as scores from Tom McCartney and Serwin Stowers.
Reigning Super Rugby champions Reds recorded a 27-20 victory over the Brumbies in Cairns. Ben Tapuai, Chris Feauai-Sautia, James Horwill and Digby Ioane all touched down for the Reds as they outscored the Brumbies four tries to one, with Michael Hooper scoring for the Brumbies.
The Crusaders and the Chiefs both secured pre-season victories over Super Rugby rivals on Saturday. The Crusaders, who lost to the Reds in the Super Rugby finale last season, beat the Hurricanes 19-8 at Mangatainoka thanks to tries from Ross Kennedy, Patrick Osbourne and Tyler Bleyendaal. Beauden Barrett scored a try and a penalty for the Hurricanes.
The Chiefs held off a Highlanders comeback to secure a 38-36 in a thriller in Queenstown. The Chiefs had a 31-10 lead thanks to tries from Robbie Robinson, Jackson Willison, Aaron Cruden and Tim Nanai-Williams. The Highlanders hit back with Telusa Veainu, Aaron Smith, Kurt Baker, Doug Tietjens, Phil Burleigh and Andrew Hore but the Chiefs held on for the win.
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