Melbourne Rebels head home on a high

· Super Rugby - AU
by Waratahs Media

The Melbourne Rebels had a dream return to AAMI Park, running out 33-14 winners over the NSW Waratahs.

In an emotional night for the Rebels, playing their first home match in over a year, Matt Toomua got the home side off to a perfect start, kicking the hosts to a 3-0 lead in the 7th minute.

Lachie Anderson grabbed the first try of the night in the 13th minute, finishing off a break down the middle of the field. Stacy Ili bust through the midfield and found Reece Hodge and Tom Pincus in support before finding the former sevens star for a 10-0 lead.

Things got worse for the Waratahs as the Rebels punished some more poor discipline.

Matt Toomua kicked two more penalty goals before scoring a try of his own with a brilliant kick and chase try, giving the hosts a 23-0 lead at half-time.

Reece Hodge extended the lead for the Rebels with a 50m penalty goal in the 56th minute before Jordan Uelese scored off a rolling maul try in the 67th minute for a 33-0 lead.

The Waratahs went down swinging, with Jeremy Williams finishing off a short side raid from Tane Edmed and Carlo Tizzano in the 77th minute, while former Rebel Jack Maddocks scored with the final play of the game finishing off a long range break from Henry Robertson.

Tane Edmed kicked the conversion from the sideline to end the game with a 33-14 score line.

Despite the result it was a special night for Harry Johnson-Holmes who played his 50th Super Rugby match for the Waratahs, while Sam Wykes and Darcy Breen made their NSW Waratahs debuts.

The Waratahs return home to face the Qld Reds at Stadium Australia in Round 6 of Super Rugby AU.

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Rebels 33 (Tries: Anderson, Toomua, Uelese Conversions: Toomua 2, Hodge Penalties: Toomua 3, Hodge) defeated Waratahs 14 (Tries: Williams, Maddocks Conversions: Edmed 2) at AAMI Park, Melbourne

WARATAHS (1-15): Harry Johnson-Holmes, Dave Porecki, Te Tera Faulkner, Sam Caird, Hugh Sinclair, Lachlan Swinton, Carlo Tizzano, Jack Dempsey, Jack Grant, Will Harrison, James Ramm, Tepai Moeroa, Alex Newsome (c), Jack Maddocks, Mark Nawaqanitawase

Reserves: Tom Horton, George Francis, Darcy Breen, Sam Wykes, Jeremy Williams, Henry Robertson, Tane Edmed, Lalakai Foketi
REBELS: (1-15): Cabous Eloff, James Hanson, Pone Faamausili, Steve Cummins, Trevor Hosea, Joshua Kemeny, Richard Hardwick, Michael Wells, Joe Powell, Matt To’omua (c), Marika Koroibete, Reece Hodge, Stacey Ili, Lachie Anderson, Tom Pincus

Reserves: Jordan Uelese, Matt Gibbon, Lucio Sordoni, Tom Nowlan, Rob Leota, James Tuttle, Glen Vaihu, Frank Lomani