Sport

Bumbling Waratahs stunned by Kings in Super Rugby shocker

Michael Willemse of the Southern Kings celebrates after scoring against the Waratahs.
Michael Willemse of the Southern Kings celebrates after scoring against the Waratahs. CRAIG GOLDING

THE hapless Waratahs have sunk to rock bottom by falling to a humbling defeat at the hands of the lowly Southern Kings at Allianz Stadium.

In one of their worst ever losses, the Tahs let slip a 10-point lead at halftime and the South Africans - who have only ever won two games away from home in their history - came home over the top with 19 second-half points.

The Kings have conceded an average of 45 points a game this season but the bumbling Tahs couldn't manage to scrape together anything resembling an efficient attack, with horrific ball security, an awful set-piece and an overall lack of urgency and attacking strategy.

It was an embarrassing performance only matched by the night the Waratahs lost to the Cheetahs in 2011 and got duly booed off by their fans.

The fans didn't boo on this occasion but they must have been tempted.

To put the Kings' victory into context, the Eastern Cape side had only won three games in the last two seasons prior to Friday night at Allianz Stadium.

Two of those wins had come over the Sunwolves and one was against the Jaguares, and the Kings are being targeted for the axe from Super Rugby next year due to a lack of results.

They beat the Rebels in 2013 in Melbourne but the Waratahs are undoubtedly their biggest scalp.

NSW are a broken team and even with the Australian conference remaining wide open, they can't lay any serious claim to be a finals contender after losing to the Kings.

 

Rob Horne of the Waratahs beats the tackle of Wandile Mjekevu of the Southern Kings.
Rob Horne of the Waratahs beats the tackle of Wandile Mjekevu of the Southern Kings. CRAIG GOLDING

The amount of dropped ball was criminal, and against a team who had proven they would crack after three or four phases, NSW couldn't even get it that far.

They turned the ball over almost 30 times, and it allowed the Kings to camp in their half in the second half, and their scrum and line out defence was attacked mercilessly by the African visitors.

The Kings clawed back from a halftime deficit with tries to Masixole Banda and they took the lead with a rolling maul try to Michael Willhemse.

When the Tahs conceded a penalty try via a backpeddling scrum in the 77th minute, the humiliation was complete.

"It was a pretty embarrassing," Waratahs captain Michael Hooper said post-match.

"Our set piece was terrible. It will be a really tough week."

The Waratahs led 17-7 at halftime, their first surplus at the break in 2017.

It was more down to the Kings' ineptitude than NSW brilliance though, with the hosts' ordinary ball security and wobbly set-piece preventing them from putting on any sustained possession or territory.

The Kings' defence is the worst in Super Rugby and NSW had ample chances to score early but in the first ten minutes they turned over the ball four times in the Kings' 22; two via lost line outs.

The first try eventually came via big Taqele Naiyaravoro in the 13th minute when even a telegraphed cross kick to Izzy Folau - designed to isolate 172cm Kings fullback Masixole Banda - still worked, just about.

A bobbling deflection was picked up by Naiyaravoro, who scored in the corner.

Any hope of a stable set-piece went out the door with NSW's scrum getting repeatedly penalised, and even weight of possession couldn't be relied upon, with numerous breakdown turnovers in attack after a phase or two.

The Kings' mistake rate was just as high, though, so the potential for disaster was small.

Growing restless, the crowd finally got on their feet when Folau sparked a 95-metre try, running from his own line. He ran to the halfway line, flicked an inside pass to Bernard Foley and the No 10 found Rob Horne, who used the sight screen to evade a pacy cover defender just at the right moment.

The Tahs went a man down in the 32nd minute when Ned Hanigan wassinbinned for a professional foul.

The Kings attacked NSW's line but Foley' alert play saw him intercept a ball on his own line, and he fed Cameron Clark who ran 80 metres to score.

The Kings took advantage of the man up when prop Justin Forwood scored a try after Foley's kick was charged down in the 36th minute and they were unlucky to not score again at the halftime siren.

Also on Friday night, the ACT Brumbies fell to the defending champion Hurricanes 56-21 in Napier.

News Corp Australia

Topics:  nsw waratahs southern kings super rugby



Overcoming the past to lead the way

REDEMPTION: Raymond Alldridge with daughter Tayla.

How a local man turned his life around for the good of his kids.

11 jobs available in Warwick right now

CASHED UP: Looking for work?

Calling everyone who's looking for work or a change of career

Warwick's winter back in force over the weekend

Freezing weather to return.

Don't get used to the warm weather

Local Partners

Festival to honour man in black

Stanthorpe could be on to a Cash cow, with organisers of a new festival confident the event could become a major drawcard for the area.


Hats off to the volunteers at Morgan Park

UPGRADE: Warwick District Sporting Car Club committee member Wayne Pfingst and volunteer Peter Herlihen at the upgraded bridge.

Praise for four dedicated volunteers at motorsport precinct

Maroons duo ready for Friday night polocrosse

EXCITED: Tambo player Rachael Sargood and son Jett will both play for Queensland at Morgan Park this weekend.

Mother and son playing in different Queensland teams this weekend

Athletes to gather Thursday for Warwick All Schools

Scots PGC student Will Gilmore at his final practice session before Thursday's Briggs Oval athletics.

Main events at athletics will be on Thursday at Briggs Oval

OPINION: Bachelor really crossed the line

Leah’s abrupt Bachelor exit is slut-shaming at its worst.

Marvel stars tease superhero epic

The four year wait for Marvel's The Defenders is over.

The Defenders stars on their long-awaited superhero team-up.

The two stars who intimidated Chris Hemsworth

Chris Hemsworth was intimidated by two other Hollywood stars.

Thor star says he was ‘weirdly shaken’ when he met two other actors.

Sam Newman: How a Playboy magazine changed everything

The new crew of The Footy Show.Source:Supplied

How a Playboy magazine changed everything.

Leah slams Matty: ‘I was incredibly disappointed’

Leah says she was ‘incredible disappointed’ with Matty J.

BACHELOR evictee's controversial chat with Kyle and Jackie O.

John Eales finds peace with the haka

Inia Maxwell and John Eales in a scene from the documentary John Eales Reveals: The Haka.

Rugby legend is on a quest to learn about a sacred Maori tradition/

The Bachelor recap: Secret pasts publicly exposed

Matty J is left speechless on The Bachelor.

TWO Bachelor contestants’ secret adult pasts have been exposed.

4800 homes to be built in massive new Coast estate

Masterplanned community full steam ahead - it's not Caloundra South

Open for inspection homes August 17 - 23

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection.

Airbnb, Stayz and co tipped to squeeze Coast housing market

HOLIDAY BOOM: Airbnb letting is putting a further squeeze on long-term rentals.

Councils exploring options to manage the industry

How we got a rental straight away on the Coast

Rita and David Allara, moved down from Townsville, paid three months up front rent to secure the place at flash new unit block in Kings Beach.

Genius move helps secure rental property