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Brumbies have cattle to break drought

Andrew Smith says the Brumbies have the team to win the Super Rugby title.

Andrew Smith says the Brumbies have the team to win the Super Rugby title. Photo: Colleen Petch

Breaking a nine-year finals drought won't cut it for the ACT Brumbies - they're determined to bring the Super Rugby trophy back to Canberra for the first time since 2004.

Still stinging from letting a play-off spot slip through their fingers in the final game of last season, the Brumbies have set themselves the lofty goal of not only winning the Australian conference but also taking out the southern hemisphere's biggest prize in provincial rugby.

The Brumbies kick-off their campaign in less than a fortnight when they host the Queensland Reds at Canberra Stadium on February 16.

With South African World Cup-winning coach Jake White entering his second season in charge and the addition of Wallabies captain David Pocock and former international Clyde Rathbone to the playing roster, outside centre Andrew Smith sees no reason why the Brumbies can't mix it with the best in the competition.

''That [the title] is what we're aiming for and I think we've got the squad to do it,'' Smith said. ''This is the year we're going to try to have a good crack at it. There's a lot of belief in the squad from last year, so there's a good feeling in the team.''

The Brumbies got valuable game time into several of their returning stars in Friday night's 20-18 win over the Western Force in Darwin.

The score was largely irrelevant as key playmakers Matt Toomua and Christian Lealiifano made their first appearances since season-ending injuries last year.

There were also encouraging debuts for highly touted recruits Pocock and Rathbone, the 31-year-old crossing for a try in his first game since retiring in 2009 and battling depression. The Brumbies round out preparations with a match against an ACT XV at Viking Park on Friday.

Rugby league convert Joseph Tomane is expected to play after recovering from a hamstring injury and will resume his strong combination with Smith, who was one of the mainstays last season. The under-rated 28-year-old played every game and was one of the Brumbies' most solid contributors, but enters his fourth season not knowing what his future is beyond this year.

Smith is off-contract at the end of the season and hasn't ruled out continuing his career abroad. ''I'm always looking to stay in Canberra, we've got a good set-up here and are building something special. Staying another year or so is definitely an option, but so is overseas, so I'm not sure at this stage,'' he said.


ACT Brumbies v ACT XV at Viking Park, 7pm.

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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 0vs USA 0 02:45The Stadium, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
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 22:00Leicester City Stadium
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 0vs ROM 0 00:30Sand
FRA 0vs IRE 0 02:45MilS
USA 0vs JPN 0 06:00Kholm
View All Fixtures
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 07:00The Stadium, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
WSF1 0vs WSF2 0 03:00Twic
View All Fixtures
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 3 3 0 0 97 13
Wales 3 3 0 0 58 13
England 3 1 2 0 1 6
Fiji 4 1 3 0 -17 5
Uruguay 3 0 3 0 -139 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
South Africa 3 2 1 0 56 11
Scotland 3 2 1 0 40 10
Japan 3 2 1 0 -12 8
Samoa 3 1 2 0 -52 4
USA 2 0 2 0 -32 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
New Zealand 3 3 0 0 87 14
Argentina 3 2 1 0 64 10
Tonga 3 1 2 0 -22 6
Georgia 3 1 2 0 -71 4
Namibia 2 0 2 0 -58 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Ireland 3 3 0 0 84 14
France 3 3 0 0 72 14
Italy 3 1 2 0 -24 5
Romania 3 1 2 0 -59 4
Canada 4 0 4 0 -73 2
View all

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