The Brumbies have crashed the NSW Waratahs homecoming party with a 31-25 win in front of 25,076 fans at Allianz Stadium.
Waratahs Academy graduate Max Jorgensen lived up to the high expectations thrust upon him pre-match, scoring two tries and making four linebreaks in his Waratahs Super Rugby debut.
Jorgensen became only the third Waratah to score a double on their Super Rugby debut matching the feat with Matt Burke (1996) and Mark Nawaqanitawase (2020).
Tom Wright did the damage early on for the Brumbies, making a break down the short side and setting up Ryan Lonergan for the first try of the match in just the 7th minute of the match.
The Waratahs hit back in the 16th minute with Angus Bell putting Max Jorgensen in enough space to bounce out of three Brumbies defenders for the first try of the night, and to level the scores.
Angus Bell left the field not long after in a huge blow to the home side, with a toe injury set to leave the Waratahs without one of their most damaging players for the near future.
Both sides traded penalty goals before Andy Muirhead caught the Waratahs napping, dotting down from a cross-field kick from Ryan Lonergan for a half-time lead.
Ryan Lonergan used his boot to kick the Brumbies in front with two penalty goals for a 21-10 lead before Max Jorgensen grabbed his second try of the night after Lalakai Foketi put the 18-year-old in space.
Corey Toole kept the visitors in front with his try in the final quarter before Jake Gordon kept the Waratahs in the hunt with his effort just minutes later.
A 74th minute Noah Lolesio penalty made it a two-score game leaving Tane Edmed no choice but to kick for goal after the siren to earn a valuable bonus point.
Waratahs Skipper Jake Gordon lamented his side’s handling in the six point loss.
“We started really well but had trouble controlling the ball tonight,” Gordon said.
“The Brumbies put a heap of pressure on at the breakdown and we struggled with that but we showed in glimpses when we could hold the ball, but just not long enough tonight.”
The Waratahs now turn their attention to their Round two match against the Fijian Drua, next Saturday 4 March at AAMI Park for Super Round.
ACT BRUMBIES 31
TRIES: R. Lonergan, Muirhead, Toole CONS: R. Lonergan 1/2, Lolesio 1/1 PENS: R. Lonergan 3/3, Lolesio 1/1
NSW WARATAHS 25 TRIES: Jorgensen 2, Gordon CONS: Edmed 2/3 PENS: Edmed 2/3
WARATAHS (1-15): Angus Bell, Dave Porecki, Archer Holz, Jed Holloway, Taleni Seu, Lachlan Swinton, Michael Hooper, Charlie Gamble, Jake Gordon (c), Tane Edmed, Max Jorgensen, Lalakai Foketi, Izaia Perese, Mark Nawaqanitawase, Ben Donaldson
RESERVES: Mahe Vailanu, Tom Lambert, Te Tera Faulkner, Hugh Sinclair, Langi Gleeson, Will Harris, Harrison Goddard, Nemani Nadolo
BRUMBIES (1-15): Blake Schoupp, Connal McInerney, Allan Alaalatoa (c), Nick Frost, Cadeyrn Neville, Rob Valetini, Rory Scott, Pete Samu, Ryan Lonergan, Jack Debreczeni, Corey Toole, Tamati Tua, Len Ikitau, Andy Muirhead, Tom Wright
RESERVES: John Ulugia, James Slipper, Rhys Van Nek, Darcy Swain, Luke Reimer, Nic White, Noah Lolesio, Ollie Sapsford