Rathbone scores in rugby return

By AAP,

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    Former Test winger Clyde Rathbone showed he has lost none of his skill, turning in a solid performance in his return from retirement as the Brumbies beat Western Force 20-18 in a Super Rugby trial.

    Rathbone, who retired in 2009 due to injuries and suffered depression while away from the game, showed power to score Brumbies’ second try of the night at Rugby Park in Darwin.

    The 31-year-old Rathbone, a former Wallabies winger, showed no signs of the persistent injuries that prematurely put his career on hold.

    “Not long now until the first game and it is all shaping up well,” Rathbone said.

    “Obviously we played two very different teams in both 40-minute blocks so it was encouraging to see us do the things that we do in training in the game.”

    As lightning crackled overhead on a warm Darwin night the Brumbies dominated the first half, with Matt Toomua also scoring a try to help build an early 17-3 lead.

    At the start of the second half Brumbies coach Jake White gave some of his less-experienced players a run, taking off Rathbone and former Force captain David Pocock.

    Pocock had been strong early in defence against his former teammates but never shone.

    Against the new faces and as the monsoon rains began to fall in the second half, the Force powered back.

    Brumbies loosehead prop Ruaidhri Murphy was sin-binned early in the second half after a professional foul.

    Force reserve Junior Rasolea scored a try with 10 minutes left in the game, but the conversion that would have levelled the scores was missed.

    The Force then pushed two penalty goal attempts wide.

    White said it had been a tough match and that he wanted to give all 30 of his players a run.

    “I suppose the lessons that we learned out of that were that every boy has to understand it is quite a tough competition,” White told AAP.

    “I didn’t want to risk injuries and play my best players right through.

    “So 40 minutes for the first group, I think they started really well and the second group showed a lot of character in the way they finished the game off.”

    He said conditions in the second half went against his team.

    “It was pelting with rain and we were playing a lot in our half because of the weather, but all credit to them, the boys stuck it out,” White said.

    Pocock said it was a bit weird to be playing his former teammates but the game was going too fast to pay attention to any niggling that may have gone on.

    “These trials are often just about effort and I think the boys did put it in,” Pocock said.

    Force coach Michael Foley said the game was a “massive step up” for his boys.

    “I think when you look at the final 60, for us to have scored virtually all the points in that 60 minutes (was pleasing). I think the longer the game went I felt the more we found our combination and the more we settled into a bit of a rhythm,” Foley said.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (27)

    • February 2nd 2013 @ 3:57am
      Billy Bob said | February 2nd 2013 @ 3:57am | ! Report

      Wish it was on tele.
      ARU please explain.

      • February 2nd 2013 @ 4:32am
        Bakkies said | February 2nd 2013 @ 4:32am | ! Report

        Trials rarely get televised. You are lucky enough to get highlights.

        • Roar Guru

          February 3rd 2013 @ 1:02pm
          Turnover said | February 3rd 2013 @ 1:02pm | ! Report

          Usually a handheld camera job.

    • February 2nd 2013 @ 5:42am
      Billy Bob said | February 2nd 2013 @ 5:42am | ! Report

      And where are the highlights, Bakkies?
      Australian rugby fans are not ‘lucky’.
      Complacent, conservative, invisible, dwindling, perhaps but not ‘lucky’.
      If there was a truly national competition (as every other code in australia has) then maybe I would not care about these trials that are our first glimpse into the S15 and wallaby talent pool.
      But we have precious few rugby games above the level of park footy in Australia.
      Like the great counter lunch deal at a Mosman pub- most of Australia doesn’t know rugby exists.

    • February 2nd 2013 @ 8:03am
      Crashy said | February 2nd 2013 @ 8:03am | ! Report

      A little harsh billy!
      Any idea on the crowd? They usuallyb get a decent turnout to this trial. It is good to see with the increase in Australian teams that trials are being played in places like Darwin, Hobart, Geelong, Madurai and Toowoomba. I think there were a couple of curtain raisers at this game as well.
      Brumbies had no injuries- any idea if this was the same for the force?

      • February 2nd 2013 @ 10:31am
        Bakkies said | February 2nd 2013 @ 10:31am | ! Report

        This will be the last of the Darwin trials that are backed by the NT Government. Apparently they didn’t get enough exposure and want bigger games. Not sure what they are expecting and beggars can’t be choosers. Can’t see the Brumbies footing the bill to go north again unless corporates get on board to cover the funding lost.

        • February 2nd 2013 @ 11:21am
          Ra said | February 2nd 2013 @ 11:21am | ! Report

          The NT is broke and the NT government said it can’t afford to sponsor those games to the tune of $300,000 and get no advertorial coverage for the NT on a national scale because the game was not televised. It’s amazing that Canberra University sponsors the Brumbies, and Defence Housing sponsors Western Force. It’s conceivable to think that if both institutions had so much money to spare, the university could lower it’s fees and Defence should put it’s ring-fenced dollars in housing it’s own people so tax payers don’t have to pay their rental top up – both institutions live off taxpayers dollar – outlandish spending I would suggest

          • February 2nd 2013 @ 12:07pm
            SkinnyKid said | February 2nd 2013 @ 12:07pm | ! Report

            Oh get a grip Ra.

            Who is CUs money making target market?
            International students.

            Which ones in particular?
            Asia

            Where are the brumbies very popular?
            Asia

            Following?

            Similar with defence housing….you do understand that they sellnthe houses to the public at a profit andvthen lease them back for defence staff? This works for many cash flow reasons…..as for the rental top up…,my giddy aunte, like a lot of employers who force staff to live in ccertain locations, the DFA pay rental assistance….

            You been listening to too much talk back radio?

            • February 2nd 2013 @ 1:02pm
              Ra said | February 2nd 2013 @ 1:02pm | ! Report

              You get a grip big shot.

              Asians dont give a damn about the Brumbies. There is only one rugby team on Asian lips – the All Black !!!

              The next one dude – between my partner, her sister and i we have over 100 years of military life experiences together. Myself and my partners ex are ex servicemen, my wifes father ex navy and her sister has just taken voluntary redundancy from Defence Housing. Ive been a night driver in recent times carting defence personnel from homes and barracks on outings and back and now work in a school that has boasted the highest number of defence kids in a school in Australia. Now that’s called real life on the ground exprience.

              Maybe you need to turn your radio down a tad and stop listening to your own feedback.

              By the way, i also spent 27 years dedicated to kids rugby too, without receiving one cent,amateurs ya know, just to bring this discussin back to game. Played a little too at one time.

              • February 2nd 2013 @ 2:41pm
                SkinnyKid said | February 2nd 2013 @ 2:41pm | ! Report

                Ive annoyed you. Sory my post was a tad harrshly worded on a readover.

                My poorly worded point is it make 100% sence for those companies…

                PS – i live and play rugby in asia. The brumbies are hugely popular.

          • February 2nd 2013 @ 2:10pm
            Gerrry and I was at the game. said | February 2nd 2013 @ 2:10pm | ! Report

            Ra,

            The Western Force is sponsored by Emirates.

            Get your facts straight.

          • February 3rd 2013 @ 6:34am
            Billy Bob said | February 3rd 2013 @ 6:34am | ! Report

            There you go. Thank you Ra. The host city doesn’t want the game because there’s no exposure for them, because it wasn’t on tele!
            Why isn’t it on tele?
            Mostly rusted on fans will watch, but its a unique opportunity to get the rugby conversation going while the other codes are still surfing.
            Glad that Pulver is a marketing exec. There is a marketing vacuum at the ARU.
            Thanks for the game breakdown Ra. Inconceivable that in the age of cameras on Mars, the ARU can’t find a way to get one or two to Darwin.

        • February 2nd 2013 @ 2:45pm
          Crockycrocky said | February 2nd 2013 @ 2:45pm | ! Report

          You seem to know a bit ‘Bakkies’ and I’m sure you will enjoy having more funds once the sale is publicised ….. Have a great day AF ….

      • February 2nd 2013 @ 12:02pm
        Ra said | February 2nd 2013 @ 12:02pm | ! Report

        The crowd was poor, even by Territory standards, around about 2300.
        White played Toomua and Leilifano at one and two for most of the match and it was that combination that reeked havoc in the Western defense especially in the first 20 minutes where they probed the right hand blind side sending the Fijian flyer away down his right wing on several almost length of the field runs, one resulting in a try to him, the second to Rathbone.
        That first five second five combination looked very settled and mature.
        The Force is in for a long sad season if it’s going to rely on that front row. The Brumbies 1st 20min pack demolished it in one of it’s few shows of strength early on, but settled to an even contest in the second half, probably because of the rotation of players, but the Bumbies had already made it’s statement, at line out, in the scrum and around the paddock at rucks and mails. The Force looked rattled most of the night. They played as the practiced in their pre game warm up, dropping passes and running into each other, and made it hard for their busy little left footed stand off the stamp his mark on the game. The Brumbies on the other hand were smooth, before and during the game.
        A spectacle, it wasn’t. The fire works was provided by the nice little monsoon storm that rolled in from the west late in the game lighting up the night sky and dousing the visiting players, driving hard at the backs of the Force players as if trying to help them
        over the line, but they ran short of time.
        Then again the storm was a nice little “welcome to country’ by our ancient Territorial resident.

        • February 2nd 2013 @ 3:08pm
          rl said | February 2nd 2013 @ 3:08pm | ! Report

          great feedback Ra, particularly regarding the Brumbies 10/12 combo.

    • February 2nd 2013 @ 8:26am
      WW said | February 2nd 2013 @ 8:26am | ! Report

      welcome back rath!

    • February 2nd 2013 @ 11:43am
      Crazy Horse said | February 2nd 2013 @ 11:43am | ! Report

      Trials are about combinations, not scores. Anyone know how the variouscombinations of both team went. In particular how did the Force’s inside back go? That is the area they needed to improve on last year.

      The Force are playing Tonga in Mandurah, a city south of Perth, next weekend.

      • February 2nd 2013 @ 1:34pm
        Ra said | February 2nd 2013 @ 1:34pm | ! Report

        mate, read my report above. My view from the grandstand. The Force need better clearnce from the base i would like to have seen your five eight given time space and protection to run his game. Neither backline really sent it wide. ball handling, mistimed passs and good defence by both sets of inside backs negated that. Both sides sets of backs made ground through probing blindside runs. Theirs in the first 20 and yours in th last. Your lineout was good, and the pack gained raity later in the game. You need to build understanding between backs and forwards. twice, once right on half time you had good attacking front foot ball. You won a penalty. Your backline strung out ready to attack, a good ball off the top from the linout inside 10 from the line, your forwards took it in, got tied up and th whistle blew. The second time early in the second half your forwards rolled down to provide good frontfoot running ball. one hit up too many,stalled the drive and stopped the momentum, moment lost. i think your five eight needs to toughen up and call for t. Hope that helps. Others here could have been at the game too and give thir view

    • February 2nd 2013 @ 11:50am
      Johnno said | February 2nd 2013 @ 11:50am | ! Report

      Trials are meaningless full stop. Unlimited interchange, 2 differnet teams on over each 40 minutes.

      • February 2nd 2013 @ 3:12pm
        rl said | February 2nd 2013 @ 3:12pm | ! Report

        Pretty meaningless contribution Johnno. At least you kept it brief. Can’t develop combinations or start building teamwork on playstation or in opposed drills.

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