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    Henry Speight's the one who got away: Chiefs

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    David Barbeler

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    Henry Speight will become eligible to play for the Wallabies.

    Henry Speight will become eligible to play for the Wallabies. Photo: Getty Images

    CANBERRA: Brumbies excitement machine Henry Speight didn't just leave the Chiefs lamenting a qualifying finals loss.

    He left their coach Dave Rennie ruing the one "that got away" after his side's dream of a Super Rugby three-peat came to a crashing end at Canberra Stadium.

    It not only avenged last year's grand final defeat for the Brumbies, but booked a semi-final date with grudge rivals the NSW Waratahs next weekend.

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    There were a total of eight tries scored on Saturday night, and while Speight didn't jag a single one, his freakish running skills dominated post-match discussions.

    The Fijian-flyer created defensive headaches for the Chiefs throughout the night, making 186 metres, 13 tackle busts, two linebreaks, three offloads and 13 runs.

    And the Chiefs only have themselves to blame.

    That's because Speight not only played for Hamilton Boys High School, but went on to represent the Waikato provincial team - the Chiefs' feeder club.

    But the previous Chiefs coaching staff "didn't rate" Speight very highly back in 2010-11, according to Rennie, and the Brumbies pounced.

    "He got away before I got there, unfortunately," Rennie said after the 32-30 loss.

    "We spoke to him when I first got up to Hamilton about trying to get him back. We were pretty keen.

    "But it's tough to see him move now."

    Tough indeed. Speight is a loyal character, re-signing with the Brumbies for another two years in May, while he'll finally be eligible to play for the Wallabies from September 11.

    And Rennie has no doubts he's ready for Test level.

    "Oh hell yeah. He's been ready for a while," Rennie said.

    "You give him the ball, even with two guys in front of him he's either going to get yardage or skin people.

    "He really troubled us."

    The only blight on Speight's performance was a 48th minute yellow card for not rolling away from a ruck when the Chiefs were hot on attack.

    Despite the Chiefs scoring two of their four tries in his absence, it didn't draw the ire of Brumbies director of rugby Laurie Fisher.

    Fisher was full of praise for Speight post match, admitting his side has probably been guilty of not creating enough space for him in previous matches.

    "He just seems absolutely motivated at the moment. He makes things out of nothing," Fisher said.

    With the Sharks beating the Highlanders overnight, that sets up a scintillating showdown between Speight and the Waratahs' most dangerous weapon Israel Folau at Allianz Stadium next Saturday.

    "To play your best two games going into a knockout semi-final is exactly where we want to be," said Brumbies skipper Ben Mowen.

    AAP

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    Super Rugby 2015

    Round 1
    Fri, 13 FebTimes shown AEDT
    CRU 10vs REB 20 Report Stats
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    Sat, 14 FebTimes shown AEDT
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    Fri, 20 FebTimes shown AEDT
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    SHA 29vs LIO 12 Report Stats
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    Round 3
    Fri, 27 FebTimes shown AEDT
    HIG 20vs RED 13 Report Stats
    FOR 13vs HUR 42 Stats
    Sat, 28 FebTimes shown AEDT
    CHT 25vs BLU 24 Report Stats
    CHF 40vs CRU 16 Stats
    REB 15vs BRU 20 Report Stats
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    LIO 19vs STO 22 Report Stats
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    Round 4
    Fri, 06 MarTimes shown AEDT
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    BRU 27vs FOR 15 Report Stats
    Sat, 07 MarTimes shown AEDT
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    RED 5vs WAR 23 Report Stats
    Sun, 08 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHT 20vs BUL 39 Report Stats
    STO 29vs SHA 13 Report Stats
    View All Fixtures
    Round 5
    Fri, 13 MarTimes shown AEDT
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    FOR 17vs REB 21 Report Stats
    Sat, 14 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CRU 34vs LIO 6 Report Stats
    HIG 26vs WAR 19 Report Stats
    RED 0vs BRU 29 Stats
    Sun, 15 MarTimes shown AEDT
    STO 19vs CHF 28 Report Stats
    CHT 10vs SHA 27 Report Stats
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    Round 6
    Fri, 20 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HIG 13vs HUR 20 Report Stats
    REB 16vs LIO 20 Report Stats
    Sat, 21 MarTimes shown AEDT
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    Sun, 22 MarTimes shown AEDT
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    SHA 12vs CHF 11 Report Stats
    WAR 28vs BRU 13 Report Stats
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    Round 7
    Fri, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
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    RED 17vs LIO 18 Report Stats
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    HIG 39vs STO 21 Report Stats
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    Round 10
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    Round 12
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    HIG 48vs SHA 15 Report Stats
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    Round 14
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    Fri, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
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    Round 16
    Fri, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
    CRU 0vs HUR 0 17:35Trafalgar Park
    BRU 0vs BUL 0 19:40GIO Stadium
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    HIG 0vs CHF 0 17:35Rugby Park
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    Round 20
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    Round 21
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    Super Rugby 2015
    Overall standings
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    Waratahs 13 9 4 0 50 41
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