Blues narrowly beat the Brumbies to secure spot in all-NZ Super Rugby final

The home side were put under pressure early on at Eden Park, as the Brumbies' second-five Irae Simone silenced the home crowd with a barnstorming try in just the third minute of the game.

After a perfect start by the Brumbies the Blues quickly took control of the game, playing open running rugby which ultimately led to their first try of the game through number-eight Hoskins Sotutu.

The home side continued to dominate the game in the first-half, with first-five Beauden Barrett orchestrating much of the play.

Blues snatch late win

The Brumbies looked like winning a battle of the best teams from either side of the Tasman Sea when hooker Billy Pollard crashed over the line off the back of a rolling maul in the 77th minute of a contest played at almost test match intensity.

The Blues turned the ball over, however, and made their way down to the home side's line and, with the referee playing advantage, All Blacks first five-eighth Barrett calmly took the three points to give his side a 12th straight win.

Crusaders beat Brumbies

Crusaders captain Scott Barrett said the 37-26 win brought a period of erratic form to a close.

"I think the last three of four weeks we've been backed into a corner."

"We've probably dug a little bit deeper with our preparation and I guess what it means to play for the Crusaders."

Leading 23-4 at half-time, the Crusaders were pushed in the second half by the Brumbies who piled on the points.

But Scott Robertson's men held on for the 37-26 win.

Brumbies keep the heat on NZ teams

The Blues hammered the Melbourne Rebels 71-28 at Eden Park on Friday to stay top of the standings but the Brumbies and New South Wales Waratahs both won on the eastern shores of the Tasman Sea on Saturday to restore pride for Australia.

The Brumbies were at their clinical best as they outmuscled the Chiefs 38-28 in Hamilton to stay two points behind the Blues in second place ahead of the Crusaders, who romped to a 53-15 victory over the Western Force in Perth.

The Waratahs beat Moana Pasifika 26-20.

Reds lose in Super Rugby Pacific

The 2021 Super Rugby AU Grand Final rematch didn't disappoint with a tight, physical 80-minutes of rugby. The Brumbies came out on top in a hard-fought fixture, despite the Reds scoring two tries-to-one.

The game came down to the wire once again, with the Brumbies holding on in the final minutes to break a three-game losing streak against the Queenslanders.

First five-eighth James O'Connor earned the Reds their first five-pointer of the night with a deceiving right-foot step and show and go close to the line to make it 7-3 in the 26th minute.

Wallabies sign Brumbies boss Dan McKellar as an assistant coach ahead of French series

McKellar was asked by Wallabies coach Dave Rennie last year but declined, preferring to focus on the Brumbies.

But after taking his team to their second successive Super Rugby AU final – for a win and a loss – he has opted to sign on for the international season.

He will return to Canberra before the 2022 Super Rugby campaign but is being earmarked for a full-time role with the Wallabies heading into the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Australia return to international action in a three-test campaign against France next month, with game one on July 7 at the SCG.

NZ teams go unbeaten in round one of Super Rugby trans-Tasman

Domingo Miotti missed a chance to see the Western Force to a home win over the Chiefs in Perth as they went down 20-19 while Noah Lolesio missed a similar last-gasp chance to earn the ACT Brumbies a draw with the Crusaders in Christchurch, handing the New Zealanders a 31-29 win.

The Blues, meanwhile, pulverised the Melbourne Rebels 50-3.

The trio of New Zealand wins added to Friday's success for the Highlanders, who outmuscled Australian champions Queensland Reds, and the Hurricanes, who beat the New South Wales Waratahs.

Brumbies go top in Super Rugby AU

A four-try first half blitz earned Dan McKellar's side the win and a bonus point to move ahead of the Queensland Reds ahead of the Reds' match-up with the NSW Waratahs on Saturday.

The Brumbies dominated throughout and, after the Force held firm despite the early pressure, it was the sin binning of Tevita Kuridrani that turned the game in the home side's favour.

The Wallabies centre was shown the yellow card for a deliberate knock on in the 19th minute and it took less than a minute for his old team to capitalise, powering out to a 28-0 halftime lead.

Brumbies captain Alaalatoa set to miss top of the table clash after copping ban for dangerous high shot

Alaalatoa was sent off just before halftime in the Brumbies’ thrilling win over Melbourne on Saturday night for a clumsy shot on Pone Fa’amausili, which left the Rebels prop concussed.

Alaalatoa pleaded guilty to the dangerous-tackle charge, with the SANZAAR Foul Play Review Committee taking into account his clean record and reducing the sanction.

Wallabies star returns to Brumbies training camp ahead of 10th Super Rugby campaign

Returning to Canberra after having to self-isolate for a fortnight after getting caught up in Sydney’s COVID-19 outbreak in recent weeks, Sio made it clear he was glad to be back ahead of his side’s season-opener against the Force on February 19.

“I think a lot of teams will have to deal with similar problems, so we’ve just got to adapt and adjust as best we can,” he said on Monday.