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Harris's trusty boot helps Reds to coast home


Jim Morton


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.


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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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
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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
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ARG 15vs AUS 29 Stats
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SAF 24vs ARG 13 Stats
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
NZL 34vs AUS 17 Stats
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Team P W L D +/- Pts
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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
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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
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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
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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
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