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Harris's trusty boot helps Reds to coast home

Date

Jim Morton

REDS 35 FORCE 20

Nick Cummins of the Force catches the ball. Click for more photos

Reds triumph at slippery Suncorp

A below-par performance by the Reds still good enough to claim win over Force. Photo: Getty Images

Cult hero Radike Samo lit up Suncorp Stadium with another super solo try before radar-boot Mike Harris ensured the Queensland Reds survived a second-half scare by the Western Force on Saturday night.

MATCH STATS

Harris slotted a Reds' record nine goals from nine attempts - giving him an amazing 24 from 24 in Super Rugby over the past two seasons - to see the defending champions prevail 35-20 on a wet night.

In their first match at home in 2012, Queensland mixed good with bad as they were given a major fright by the rank underdogs who looked dead and buried at 26-6 down in the 50th minute.

Inspirational Force skipper David Pocock and then playmaker James Stannard stepped through feeble defence for two tries within five minutes to turn the contest on its head.

But Kiwi-bred five-eighth Harris, ably filling in for the injured Quade Cooper, killed off the uprising by kicking three more clutch penalties to equal John Eales' 1996 mark of nine goals.

"We're pleased to win but we're not pleased how we got it," said Reds skipper James Horwill, who lamented poor ball control and defensive lapses.

"They were pretty soft tries ... us just missing one on one tackles and that's not good enough.

The Reds built their 20-point lead through a Samo intercept before the break when he recreated his memorable IRB try of the year against New Zealand.

In in his first match at Suncorp since last August's Tri-Nations triumph over the All Blacks, the wild-haired No.8 again sprinted 60m to the delight of the 33,563-strong Brisbane crowd after steaming onto a Stannard inside ball from a scrum move.

Queensland were simply more clinical, kicked better and far smarter in their option-taking than their winless western rivals.

While the visitors' pack held their own and constantly pressured at the breakdown and set-piece, their attack fumbled and bumbled their way into error throughout the first half whenever they worked themselves into try-scoring position.

A Stannard break in the 14th minute was followed by three poor choices as a two-man overlap and space on the left was unforgivably ignored.

The disciplined Reds defence held firm under pressure and when Will Genia and stand-out Ben Tapuai had the chance to punish Nick Cummins for a 20th-minute turnover on half-way, they pounced.

Genia darted to the blind a delivered a deft pass around the corner which Tapuai took with his right hand before beating Nathan Charles and Napolioni Nalaga on a burst to the corner for a 10-0 lead..

QUEENSLAND REDS 35 (Radike Samo, Ben Tapuai tries Michael Harris 2 cons 7 pens) bt WESTERN FORCE 20 (David Pocock, James Stannard tries Stannard 2 cons 2 pens) at Suncorp Stadium. Referee: Ian Smith. Crowd: 33,563.

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Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 0vs FJI 0 05:00Twic
TGA 0vs GEO 0 21:00Kholm
IRE 0vs CAN 0 23:30MilS
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs JPN 0 01:45Brig
FRA 0vs ITA 0 05:00Twic
SAM 0vs USA 0 21:00Brig
WAL 0vs URU 0 23:30MilS
Mon, 21 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs ARG 0 01:45Wemb
Wed, 23 SepTimes shown AEST
SCO 0vs JPN 0 23:30Kholm
Thu, 24 SepTimes shown AEST
AUS 0vs FJI 0 01:45MilS
FRA 0vs ROM 0 05:00Olym
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs NAM 0 05:00Olym
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 0vs GEO 0 01:45Kholm
ITA 0vs CAN 0 23:30Ella
Sun, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs SAM 0 01:45Villa
ENG 0vs WAL 0 05:00Twic
AUS 0vs URU 0 21:00Villa
SCO 0vs USA 0 23:30Ella
Mon, 28 SepTimes shown AEST
IRE 0vs ROM 0 01:45Wemb
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 0vs NAM 0 01:45Sand
Fri, 02 OctTimes shown AEST
WAL 0vs FJI 0 01:45MilS
FRA 0vs CAN 0 05:00stadium:mk
Sat, 03 OctTimes shown AEST
NZL 0vs GEO 0 05:00MilS
SAM 0vs JPN 0 23:30stadium:mk
Sun, 04 OctTimes shown AEST
SAF 0vs SCO 0 01:45St James' Park
ENG 0vs AUS 0 06:00Twic
Mon, 05 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 0vs TGA 0 00:30KPS
IRE 0vs ITA 0 02:45Olym
Wed, 07 OctTimes shown AEDT
CAN 0vs ROM 0 02:45KPS
FJI 0vs URU 0 06:00stadium:mk
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 0vs USA 0 02:45Olym
NAM 0vs GEO 0 06:00Sand
Sat, 10 OctTimes shown AEDT
NZL 0vs TGA 0 06:00St James' Park
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 0vs SCO 0 00:30St James' Park
AUS 0vs WAL 0 02:45Twic
ENG 0vs URU 0 06:00Manch
ARG 0vs NAM 0 22:00KPS
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 0vs ROM 0 00:30Sand
FRA 0vs IRE 0 02:45MilS
USA 0vs JPN 0 06:00Kholm
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Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinB 0vs RUpA 0 02:00Twic
WinC 0vs RUpD 0 06:00MilS
WinD 0vs RUpC 0 23:00MilS
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
WinA 0vs RUpB 0 02:00Twic
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
WQF1 0vs WQF2 0 02:00Twic
Mon, 26 OctTimes shown AEDT
WQF3 0vs WQF4 0 03:00Twic
Sat, 31 OctTimes shown AEDT
LSF1 0vs LSF2 0 07:00Olym
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
WSF1 0vs WSF2 0 03:00Twic
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
France 0 0 0 0 0 0
New Zealand 0 0 0 0 0 0
Canada 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tonga 0 0 0 0 0 0
Japan 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Romania 0 0 0 0 0 0
Argentina 0 0 0 0 0 0
England 0 0 0 0 0 0
Georgia 0 0 0 0 0 0
Scotland 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 0 0 0 0 0 0
USA 0 0 0 0 0 0
Italy 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ireland 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Fiji 0 0 0 0 0 0
Samoa 0 0 0 0 0 0
Namibia 0 0 0 0 0 0
South Africa 0 0 0 0 0 0
Wales 0 0 0 0 0 0
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