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Brumbies reined in early but score convincing win

Brumbies 38 bt ACT XV 7

Brumbies player Robbie Coleman in action during the game against the ACT XV at Duntroon.

Brumbies player Robbie Coleman in action during the game against the ACT XV at Duntroon. Photo: Jay Cronan

They travelled almost 35,000 kilometres in a month to chase a Super Rugby title but the ACT Brumbies' bid for championship redemption started in front of a handful of fans and defence cadets.

But what was supposed to be a Super Rugby warm up turned into a dog fight and ''wake up call'' for the Brumbies against the ACT XV at Duntroon on Friday night.

The Brumbies won the match 38-7. But a week out from their round-one clash against the Queensland Reds, a group of determined part-time Canberra club players held the Brumbies to 7-7 at half-time.

Kurtley Beale of the Waratahs. Click for more photos

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It was a scrappy performance as the Brumbies pushed passes, lacked some intensity and turned over too much ball at the breakdown.

Skipper Ben Mowen admitted his team would suffer if it didn't rectify its problems immediately.

''The ACT XV caught us on the hop with the intensity they brought, but it was a good hit out because we were well short in some areas and if we do that again next week we won't get the result,'' Mowen said.

''It wasn't up to standard. But it doesn't worry me, the guys responded and that's the mental challenge.

''You can sometimes think things will happen instead of earning it, but the ACT XV made us earn everything.''

The Brumbies had hoped to use the low-key trial to fine tune areas of their game before taking on the Reds.

Wallabies centre Pat McCabe had some nervous moments when he was crunched in a head knock again.

But despite breaking his neck twice since November 2012, McCabe got through 70 minutes, the most game time he's seen in almost a year.

The Brumbies' Australian rivals were ramping up their preparations in trials against Super Rugby oppositions.

But the Brumbies got a bigger test than they expected as a gutsy and determined ACT XV side saw a chance to cause a massive upset against last season's Super Rugby grand finalists.

In the end the Brumbies' superior fitness overpowered the ACT representative side.

''It's a good wake-up call,'' Brumbies coach Stephen Larkham said. ''It's the quality of opposition we're looking for, we're keen to get the pre-season development of the team. We've got eight games in a row to start the Super Rugby season and this was a really good fit for us.''

The Brumbies play the Reds next Saturday night. They are set to welcome back Wallabies outside centre Tevita Kuridrani (suspension) and lock Sam Carter (calf injury).

ACT BRUMBIES 38 (Ben Mowen 2, Pat McCabe, Siliva Siliva, Jesse Mogg, Robbie Coleman tries; Jesse Mogg 3, Nic White conversions) bt ACT XV 7 (Tom Staniforth try; Rodney Iona conversion) at Duntroon on Friday night.

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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
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NZL 26vs ARG 16 Report Stats
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SCO 45vs JPN 10 Report Stats
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AUS 28vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 38vs ROM 11 Report Stats
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NZL 58vs NAM 14 Report Stats
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ARG 54vs GEO 9 Report Stats
ITA 23vs CAN 18 Report Stats
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SAF 46vs SAM 6 Report Stats
ENG 25vs WAL 28 Report Stats
AUS 65vs URU 3 Report Stats
SCO 39vs USA 16 Report Stats
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IRE 44vs ROM 10 Report Stats
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TGA 35vs NAM 21 Report Stats
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WAL 23vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 41vs CAN 18 Report Stats
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ENG 13vs AUS 33 Report Stats
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ARG 45vs TGA 16 Report Stats
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ARG 64vs NAM 19 Report Stats
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ITA 32vs ROM 22 Report Stats
FRA 9vs IRE 24 Report Stats
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Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 0vs WAL 0 02:00Twic
NZL 0vs FRA 0 06:00MilS
IRE 0vs ARG 0 23:00MilS
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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
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South Africa 4 3 1 0 120 16
Scotland 4 3 1 0 43 14
Japan 4 3 1 0 -2 12
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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
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