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


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

'It could happen to anyone': family's drug abuse message

FIGHTING ADDICTION: Family Drug Support is opening a new, free support group in Caboolture.

'It could happen to anyone': family's drug abuse message

A gem find for the ages

JOINT EFFORT: Roger Dunstan, Geoff Bilbow and John Campbell admiring their historic gem donation.

A gem find for the ages

Farmer's hailed for 'heroic' work

BRAVE ACT: Stephen and Gavin Scurr have been awarded a Local Heroes award by the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Farmer's hailed for 'heroic' work

Local Partners

Free blood pressure check for Bribie Island

Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check arrives at Bribie Island Shopping Centre tomorrow as part of a series of events taking place across Queensland.

What to expect at Birds of Tokyo's Ipswich gig

The band will perform at the Racehorse Hotel on Friday.

BAND member Glen Sarangapany talks music, pub grub and doing shoeys

What public holidays are left in 2017

Ipswich residents will get the day off tomorrow for the show.

IPSWICH residents will get tomorrow off for the show

Caitlyn comes home to launch debut album

Gympie's Caitlyn Shadbolt will launch here debut album Songs On My Sleeve at an exclusive all-ages concert in Gympie on Friday, May 26.

Win tickets to Caitlyn's album launch

Kim Kardashian slammed over Manchester tribute

KIM Kardashian has been slammed by her followers after posting a tribute to the victims of the Manchester terror attack.

Top Gun 2 movie is happening, Tom Cruise confirms

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Top Gun.

TOM Cruise delights fans with announcement on Sunrise.

The first Baywatch movie reviews are in

From left, Jon Bass, Alex Daddario, Zac Efron, Dwayne Johnson, Kelly Rohrbach, and Ilfenesh Hadera in a scene from the movie Baywatch.

Critics were less than impressed.

Boyfriend loses it over sex lie

Stacey Louise’s sex lie destroys her relationship.

SEVEN Year Switch’s Stacey told a fib about her sex life.

Why Crowe’s thankful for those ‘bulls**t’ rumours

Russell Crowe and Terri Irwin in 2007.

Crowe and Terri Irwin have been dodging dating rumours for years now

MOVIE REVIEW: King Arthur - Legend of the Sword

Charlie Hunnam in a scene from the movie King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.

Why the critics have got Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur all wrong.

Concert death toll revised up to 22, tour suspended

There have been multiple confirmed deaths after 'explosions' heard at Ariana Grande concert in Manchester

"We saw blood on people when we got outside."

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

One of Maryborough's most historic homes is still for sale

FULL OF HISTORY: Trisha Moulds is owner of the historic Tinana state known as Rosehill. The beautiful home is currently for sale.

It has been the scene of both joy and tragedies over the years.

The face of the Sunshine Coast's overpriced rental crisis

Alyx Wilson had to rent a $385 unit in Currimundi because the market was too competitive for cheaper rental housing. She is now renting a room from friends who own a house in Currimundi, and says its much more affordable.

Young people feel the strain in competitive, expensive rental market

WATCH: Take a tour of a tradie's dream home

5a Bruce Hiskens Court, Norman Gardens, going for $720,000. INSET: Lea Taylor.

Huge block with potential for anything

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!