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Thread: Blues beat New South Wales Waratahs 26-13 in Super Rugby qualifying final

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    (formerly known as Coach) Your Humble Servant Darren's Avatar
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    Blues beat New South Wales Waratahs 26-13 in Super Rugby qualifying final

    Phil Waugh's career and New South Wales Waratahs' brave 2011 Super Rugby campaign were snuffed out by a surging Blues outfit 26-13 in Friday's Super Rugby elimination qualifier.

    The 31-year-old was gallant in his 132nd and final Super Rugby match but the depleted Tahs were no match for the hosts, despite matching the Blues' tally of two tries.

    The Waratahs did score the first and last tries but the Blues otherwise dominated in front of a disappointing crowd of 16,100 at Auckland's Eden Park.

    Sadly befitting their misfortune in a season of struggle, NSW suffered another serious injury with lock Kane Douglas badly damaging his ankle in a sickening second-half collision.

    Missing nine regular starters - including Wallabies stars Tatafu Polota-Nau, Wycliff Palu, Drew Mitchell and Berrick Barnes - the Waratahs started as rank underdogs but aimed up in the first half and delivered some worrying moments for the home side.

    But the barnstorming Polota-Nau was badly missed as reserve hooker John Ulugia struggled at the lineouts and the pack waned in the breakdown battle as the match wore on.

    "We certainly had our fair share of injuries, that's no excuse, I think every team in the competition has had injuries but we've had more than most," Waugh said.

    It brought the curtain down on captain Waugh's career and was the last NSW match for Melbourne Rebels signing Kurtley Beale, Japan-bound Sosene Anesi, and France-bound pair Luke Burgess and Pat O'Connor.

    Waugh was typically tenacious all night in the highly-physical affair but his poor choice around the hour mark to illegally pilfer at the back of a breakdown enabled Lachie Munro to kick his third penalty goal for the Blues to lead 16-8.

    All Blacks lock Ali Williams then delivered the last rites with a 63rd minute try.

    http://www.foxsports.com.au/rugby/su...-1226081560350

     

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    Interesting on the TWf tipping. Everyone who tipped did so for the Blues and within 10 points of the margin.

    The bookie is sad..

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