Beale Returns For Victorious Force Against Crusaders


Beale returns for victorious Force against Crusaders

Perth, (APP - UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News - 20th Apr, 2024) Former Wallaby Kurtley Beale made a winning return to Super Rugby as the Western Force upset the Canterbury Crusaders 37-15 on Saturday to climb off the bottom of the table.

Two months after being cleared of sexual assault allegations, veteran fullback Beale played his part as the Force piled more misery on the Crusaders, whose seventh loss from eight matches plunged them into last place.

It was Beale's debut for the Perth-based Force and his first Super Rugby game in four years.

The 35-year-old was suspended from all rugby in 2023 - missing the chance to play at a fourth World Cup - after being arrested in January last year and charged over an alleged incident in the bathroom of a Sydney pub.

The influence of the 95-Test veteran since joining the Force in March on a short-term contract, was hailed by captain Nic White.

"Right from the first training session to this game, his guidance has been phenomenal," said White, who added his players had never lost self-belief despite their struggles.

"We've stayed true to how we want to play, what we believe in. We've had a tough little trot but no panic stations. It's nice to get a little bit of a reward."

The Force notched their second win, scoring four tries to three in the clash of the two bottom placed sides.

Fly-half Ben Donaldson kicked 17 points, including five penalties.

After conceding the opening try, the home side were 16-5 ahead at the interval, boosted a five-pointer to winger Chase Tiatia.

The visitors fought back to trail 22-15 midway through the second half, with Sevu Reece crossing to become the all-time leading Crusaders try-scorer with 53.

However, the Force finished stronger through tries to forwards Sam Carter and Carlo Tizzano through, both from lineout drives.

Earlier, Hoskins Sotutu crossed for two tries as the Auckland Blues ran away resounding 46-7 winners over the ACT Brumbies on Saturday.

A match between the teams ranked second and third in the standings turned into a rout as the home side scored seven tries in wet conditions at Eden Park.

It was the second-placed Blues' fifth straight win, putting them five points behind the Wellington Hurricanes, the only team to beat them this season.

The result halted a five-match winning streak for the Brumbies, who are third after slumping to the third-biggest loss in their history and the biggest in 13 years.

With the powerful Blues forward pack in control, Sotutu was prominent with the ball in hand and scored at the start and finish of the first half to put his team 24-0 ahead at the interval.

It took the dynamic back-rower to a competition-leading eight tries for the season.