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Brumbies put unsettling week behind them to steal win

Date

Chris Dutton

BRUMBIES 24 CHEETAHS 23

Christian Lealiifano of the Brumbies celebrates with team mates after kicking the winning penalty goal.

Christian Lealiifano of the Brumbies celebrates with team mates after kicking the winning penalty goal. Photo: Cameron Spencer

JAKE WHITE has declared the ACT Brumbies' coaching saga "finished once and for all" and wants his team's heart-stopping victory yesterday to end the ongoing speculation about his future.

MATCH STATS

The Brumbies put a week of off-field distractions behind them to score a last-gasp one-point win over the Cheetahs at Canberra Stadium.

Cheetahs Izak van der Westhuizen and Ryno Benjamin tackle Brumbies number eight Ben Mowen.

Cheetahs Izak van der Westhuizen and Ryno Benjamin tackle Brumbies number eight Ben Mowen. Photo: Stuart Walmsley

A win was the only way the Brumbies could start moving forward after White said he was keen to apply to be England's new coach last week.

He withdrew his interest on Friday and said he was committed to his four-year deal at the Brumbies, but it was Christian Lealiifano's penalty goal after the siren which secured a one-point triumph and ended the drama.

"The most important thing is I want to make sure we can finish it off once and for all," White said.

Returning Wallaby ... Pat McCabe of the Brumbies scores a try.

Returning Wallaby ... Pat McCabe of the Brumbies scores a try. Photo: Getty Images

"This is the Brumbies, we're in the Super Rugby competition, I won't want to hear any more about where I'm going … focus on the rugby, the Brumbies are important, we've won two games and we're at the top of the log. It's dead and buried. That's it. It's only fair on this group of players that we start focusing on them.''

The Brumbies wouldn't have used the speculation surrounding White as an excuse if they had lost the clash against the Cheetahs.

But a defeat would have added uncertainty to whether it had disrupted the squad on the eve of the game.

Stephen Moore of the Brumbies is tackled. Click for more photos

Brumbies scrape home against Cheetahs

Afternoon rugby returns to Canberra as Cheetahs give Brumbies a fright. Photo: Cameron Spencer

For 75 minutes the Brumbies were in danger of being just the second team to lose to the Cheetahs outside South Africa. But Lealiifano calmly slotted two penalties in the last five minutes to lift his team to victory, with the winning penalty coming after the Brumbies' scrum demolished the Cheetahs.

The win was far from convincing, with the Brumbies struggling to build pressure against one of the worst travelling sides in the competition. However, last year it took the Brumbies two months to win two games. This year it has taken just two weeks.

BRUMBIES 24 (Pat McCabe, Henry Speight tries Christian Lealiifano con 4 pens) bt CHEETAHS 23 (Tewis de Bruyn, Willie Le Roux tries Johan Goosen 2 cons 3 pens) at Canberra Stadium. Referee: Keith Brown. Crowd: 12,377.

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THE ACT Brumbies have played just two games against lowly-ranked opponents, but they've already proven they're no longer haunted by the demons of last year.

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CHRISTIAN LEALIIFANO was the man of the moment, but it was the ACT Brumbies' forwards who delivered a performance fitting of Ben Alexander's half century.

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Christian Lealiifano's penalty goal after the siren helped the Brumbies get out of jail with a 24-23 victory at Canberra Stadium.

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Rugby Internationals 2014

Round 1
Sat, 07 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 18 vs TGA 18 Report Stats
FJI 25 vs ITA 14 Report Stats
NZL 20 vs ENG 15 Report Stats
AUS 50 vs FRA 23 Report Stats
Sun, 08 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 47 vs WXV 13 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 29 Report Stats
USA 6 vs SCO 24 Report Stats
CAN 25 vs JPN 34 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 2
Sat, 14 JunTimes shown AEST
SAM 15 vs ITA Report Stats
FJI 45 vs TGA 17 Report Stats
NZL 28 vs ENG 27 Report Stats
AUS 6 vs FRA Report Stats
Sun, 15 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 38 vs WAL 16 Report Stats
CAN 17 vs SCO 19 Report Stats
ARG 17 vs IRE 23 Report Stats
USA 29 vs JPN 37 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Sat, 21 JunTimes shown AEST
ARG 19 vs SCO 21 Report Stats
FJI 13 vs SAM 18 Report Stats
JPN 26 vs ITA 23 Report Stats
AUS 39 vs FRA 13 Stats
NZL 36 vs ENG 13 Report Stats
Sun, 22 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 31 vs WAL 30 Report Stats
USA 38 vs CAN 35 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Sun, 29 JunTimes shown AEST
RSA 55 vs SCO 6 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 5
Sun, 02 NovTimes shown AEDT
BAR 36 vs AUS 40 Report Stats
USA 6 vs NZL 74 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 6
Sun, 09 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 24 vs SAM 13 Report Stats
ENG 21 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
WAL 28 vs AUS 33 Report Stats
FRA 40 vs FJI 14 Report Stats
IRE 29 vs RSA 15 Report Stats
SCO 41 vs ARG 31 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 7
Sun, 16 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 18 vs ARG 20 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs RSA 31 Report Stats
WAL 17 vs FJI 13 Report Stats
SCO 16 vs NZL 24 Report Stats
FRA 29 vs AUS 26 Report Stats
Mon, 17 NovTimes shown AEDT
IRE 49 vs GEO 7 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 8
Sun, 23 NovTimes shown AEDT
ITA 6 vs RSA 22 Report Stats
SCO 37 vs TGA 12 Report Stats
IRE 26 vs AUS 23 Report Stats
WAL 16 vs NZL 34 Report Stats
ENG 28 vs SAM 9 Report Stats
FRA 13 vs ARG 18 Report Stats
View All Fixtures
Round 9
Sun, 30 NovTimes shown AEDT
ENG 26 vs AUS 17 Report Stats
WAL 12 vs RSA 6 Report Stats
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