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Anscombe leads Blues to shock win over Bulls



Match winner ... Gareth Anscombe runs away to score one of his two tries for the Blues.

Match winner ... Gareth Anscombe runs away to score one of his two tries for the Blues.

PRETORIA: Fly-half Gareth Anscombe scored all the points for the Blues as they triumphed 29-23 against the Bulls on Saturday and put a poor start to the Super Rugby season behind them.


Anscombe scored two tries which he converted and kicked five penalties out of seven attempts at a muted Loftus Versfeld as Blues gained their first win after losses to fellow New Zealand sides Crusaders and Chiefs.

Usually deadly goal kicker Morne Steyn had a rare off day for the South African side, succeeding with only three of seven shots at goal, although he did strike a vital stoppage-time conversion between the posts to earn a bonus point.

Left wing Bjorn Basson crossed the tryline twice and captain and number eight Pierre Spies once for the three-time champions with Steyn landing one conversion and two penalties.

The outcome was a reality check for the Bulls after wins over South African rivals theSharks and Cheetahs, who they scored 51 points against last weekend.

"There was a lot of pressure on us in the first half and we defended well," said Blues hooker and captain Keven Mealamu, who helped the All Blacks win the World Cup on home soil last October.

"We had a lot of belief in ourselves despite those early season losses and it is always great to win at Loftus. The boys will celebrate the win tonight and put their heads down tomorrow and get back to work."

Spies was blunt: "There were too many mistakes in our own half and the Blues punished us. We were neither creative nor clinical and now we must get back on the horse and prepare for our next match."

Blues, who have also won three Super titles, made the perfect start with Anscombe intercepting a Francois Venter pass and sprinting 55 metres for a second-minute try.

His conversion plus a penalty gave the Blues a 10-point advantage that the Bulls halved when Spies barged over in the corner, and a Steyn penalty cut the deficit to two points.

But there was no stopping Anscombe as he landed a penalty and converted his second try to put the visitors 20-8 ahead at half-time despite having veteran lock Ali Williams sent to the sin bin for collapsing a maul.

A couple of penalties from Anscombe and one from Steyn left the Blues 26-11 ahead with 12 minutes to go and the match-winner kicked another penalty between a brace of Basson tries with Rene Ranger of the Blues sin binned after the second.

The New Zealanders now head south to face Western Stormers in Cape Town Friday while the Bulls receive a bye and an automatic four points in the southern hemisphere provincial championship.

BLUES 29 (Gareth Anscombe 2 tries 2 cons 5 pens) bt BULLS 23 (Bjorn Basson 2, Pierre Spies tries Morne Steyn con 2 pens) at Loftus Versfeld. Referee: Steve R. Walsh.


HuffPost Australia

Rugby World Cup 2015

Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 35vs FJI 11 Report Stats
TGA 10vs GEO 17 Report Stats
IRE 50vs CAN 7 Report Stats
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 32vs JPN 34 Report Stats
FRA 32vs ITA 10 Report Stats
SAM 25vs USA 16 Report Stats
WAL 54vs URU 9 Report Stats
Mon, 21 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 26vs ARG 16 Report Stats
Wed, 23 SepTimes shown AEST
SCO 45vs JPN 10 Report Stats
Thu, 24 SepTimes shown AEST
AUS 28vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 38vs ROM 11 Report Stats
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 58vs NAM 14 Report Stats
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 54vs GEO 9 Report Stats
ITA 23vs CAN 18 Report Stats
Sun, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 46vs SAM 6 Report Stats
ENG 25vs WAL 28 Report Stats
AUS 65vs URU 3 Report Stats
SCO 39vs USA 16 Report Stats
Mon, 28 SepTimes shown AEST
IRE 44vs ROM 10 Report Stats
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 35vs NAM 21 Report Stats
Fri, 02 OctTimes shown AEST
WAL 23vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 41vs CAN 18 Report Stats
Sat, 03 OctTimes shown AEST
NZL 43vs GEO 10 Report Stats
SAM 5vs JPN 26 Report Stats
Sun, 04 OctTimes shown AEST
SAF 34vs SCO 16 Report Stats
ENG 13vs AUS 33 Report Stats
Mon, 05 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 45vs TGA 16 Report Stats
IRE 16vs ITA 9 Report Stats
Wed, 07 OctTimes shown AEDT
CAN 15vs ROM 17 Report Stats
FJI 47vs URU 15 Report Stats
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 64vs USA 0 Report Stats
NAM 16vs GEO 17 Stats
Sat, 10 OctTimes shown AEDT
NZL 47vs TGA 9 Report Stats
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 33vs SCO 36 Report Stats
AUS 15vs WAL 6 Report Stats
ENG 60vs URU 3 Stats
ARG 64vs NAM 19 Report Stats
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 32vs ROM 22 Report Stats
FRA 9vs IRE 24 Report Stats
USA 18vs JPN 28 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 23vs WAL 19 Stats
NZL 62vs FRA 13 Report Stats
IRE 20vs ARG 43 Report Stats
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
AUS 35vs SCO 34 Stats
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 18vs NZL 20 Stats
Mon, 26 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 15vs AUS 29 Stats
Sat, 31 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 24vs ARG 13 Stats
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
NZL 34vs AUS 17 Stats
View All Fixtures
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 4 4 0 0 106 17
Wales 4 3 1 0 49 13
England 4 2 2 0 58 11
Fiji 4 1 3 0 -17 5
Uruguay 4 0 4 0 -196 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
South Africa 4 3 1 0 120 16
Scotland 4 3 1 0 43 14
Japan 4 3 1 0 -2 12
Samoa 4 1 3 0 -55 6
USA 4 0 4 0 -106 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
New Zealand 4 4 0 0 125 19
Argentina 4 3 1 0 109 15
Georgia 4 2 2 0 -70 8
Tonga 4 1 3 0 -60 6
Namibia 4 0 4 0 -104 1
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Ireland 4 4 0 0 99 18
France 4 3 1 0 57 14
Italy 4 2 2 0 -14 10
Romania 4 1 3 0 -69 4
Canada 4 0 4 0 -73 2
View all

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