Brumbs captain Alan Alalatoa said he would not be surprised if the ACT-based side, on a 21-19 loss to the Blues, came to his side to “apologize” after being on the wrong end of a one-sided penalty count.
Despite occupying just 35 per cent and playing almost the entire match on the wrong end of the field, the Brumbeys arguably made the best defensive display of the season from any Super Rugby team on Saturday night.
In the 78th minute, Billy Pollard’s effort saw Brumbis take a two-point lead, and Noah Lolesio converted from the sidelines to hold on to his nerves before the Brumbis, playing at home, were lucky.
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All of this was achieved despite losing the penalty count 16-5 and even playing with almost 13 men for about three minutes, when both Foulau Finga’a and Darcy Sweeney received yellow cards after penalizing late in the first half.
But before All Blacks star Bouden Barrett slotted through a match-winning field goal, the Brumbeys fell shortly after the final buzz as the Blues began to take the field as a result of a turnover of possession.
“It was almost the intensity of the Test match, the impact and the nature of the view,” Barrett told Sport after the win.
“We knew you had a hell of a fight when you got to Canberra and we got it.”
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When the match took place in a thrilling fashion, Alalatoa was furious that his team could not cope with the pressure caused by referee Damon Murphy’s building penalty.
“Usually, our boys showed so much heart tonight, our backs were against the wall throughout the game,” Alalatoa said.
“I think the penalty number was 16-5.
“I think some of it was our fault, but mate, I think in a week we’ll get an apology or something like that. We’ll probably send them some videos.”
Alalatoa said he was hopeful that the group’s young players took a lesson from the results with the final football around the corner.
“We played most of that first half in our defensive zone and defended our hearts and it was like a second half,” he added.
“I don’t think we ever got the green rub.
“At the end of the day, it’s not an excuse for us. It’s a final footy for you.
“It’s a good taste for some of our young boys, which is what we should do next when we get the chance. I’m proud of the heart we showed.”
After defeating the Hurricanes and the Chiefs, the result for Brumbis is two consecutive draws against New Zealand.
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