Israel Folau scored a fantastic individual try but was largely contained well by the Brumbies. Photo: Getty Images
It was billed as the Israel Folau show, but it was the Brumbies' forwards who stole his thunder with a dominant display that showed you can out-muscle class.
Folau showed a few glimpses early - involved in a break down the right wing and then leaping high to take a trademark big grab that brought about the interest of the AFL a few years ago.
But it wasn't long before the Brumbies' forwards were taking control of the game and restricting the supply of the Waratahs' high-profile back line, which includes Folau and Kurtley Beale.
Brumbies vs Waratahs
Ben Alexander of the Brumbies reacts. Photo: Stefan Postles
The Brumbies' scrum completely dominated and from that strong base the Super Rugby grand finalists were able to bring their own backs into the game.
And Jesse Mogg became the fullback to stamp his mark on the encounter first.
The Brumbies' No.15 kicked deep to the corner with precision.
It led to the opening try of the game off the back of a scrum - Nic White able to dart over after Tevita Kuridrani had smashed a big hole up the middle.
Then Mogg crossed the line himself, chipping the ball over the approaching Folau, turning him around and beating him in the foot race for the ball as the pair dived for it shoulder-to-shoulder.
It was Mogg's hands that forced it down and the Brumbies were away.
But it was Kuridrani's try, and the Brumbies' third, that highlighted the work of the forwards.
Brumbies prop Ben Alexander darted through a hole and flew towards the line, only to be dragged down just centimetres out.
The ball went wide and Kuridrani finished it off.
Scott Fardy was immense in the back row, bullocking his way around with the ball in a manic manner.
And you can't say enough about the scrum.
They repeatedly beat the Tahs and it proved the difference in the dying minutes as they had their backs against the wall with the Waratahs pressing against a depleted home side following back-to-back yellow cards.
That was when Folau finally came into the game.
As the Brumbies tired with just 14 men on the park, he was able to beat three tackles and, left with only White to beat, dive into the corner.
He'd continued his try-scoring ways, but only when the Brumbies were depleted.
Up until then it had been about the hard-working forwards.
And fittingly, they won the scrum that led to White's penalty that sealed it in the dying seconds.
"I thought our scrum was outstanding tonight, it was the difference between the two sides in the game," Mowen said.
"At one stage there at the end, with a prop in the bin and then we put Andrew Smith, who was playing wing, to No.8 and we got a penalty at the end there to win the game.
"Often your one, two and three do their work week-in, week-out and don't get their praises sung, but they were outstanding tonight."