Brumbies move into top spot

Ben Alexander bagged a brace as the Brumbies beat the Reds 29-0 in Brisbane on Saturday, writes BRENTON CHELIN.

The injury-ravaged Reds were no match for the Brumbies, and failed to trouble the scorers on another miserable afternoon for the 2011 champions.

First-half tries from Stephen Moore and Alexander helped the Brumbies to a 10-0 half-time lead, which was not an accurate reflection of their forward dominance.

The Reds were simply unable to get into the match, with Will Genia and Nick Frisby struggling behind a receding pack.

What little ball they did see was kicked away poorly, while handling errors meant they were unable to get any continuity on attack.

The Reds' fate was effectively sealed in the second half when Liam Gill received a yellow card for a suplex on Nic White in the buildup to Alexander's second try.

With Gill off the park, the Brumbies pinned the Reds deep in their own half, and should've received a penalty try following four successive scrum penalties. As it was, Ita Vaea, who enjoyed another strong outing at the back of the Brumbies scrum, crashed over for the bonus-point try.

Leali'ifano was on hand to pounce on a mix-up between the Reds to seal the rout with a converted try.

The result was another ominous warning from the Brumbies, who rarely had to get out of second gear, although next weekend's clash with the Waratahs in Sydney will be a fairer reflection of their title credentials.

Brumbies – Tries: Stephen Moore, Ben Alexander (2), Ita Vaea, Christian Leali'ifano. Conversions: Christian Leali'ifano (2).

Reds – 15 Ben Tapuai, 14 Chris Kuridrani, 13 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 12 Anthony Fainga’a, 11 Campbell Magnay, 10 Nick Frisby, 9 Will Genia, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Adam Thomson, 5 James Horwill, 4 Marco Kotze, 3 Sam Talakai, 2 Saia Fainga’a, 1 James Slipper (c).
Subs: 16 James Hanson, 17 Ben Daley, 18 Sef Faagase, 19 Dave McDuling, 20 Curtis Browning, 21 Scott Gale, 22 Sam Johnson, 23 Tom Banks.

Brumbies – 15 Robbie Coleman, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Christian Leali'ifano, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Matt Toomua, 9 Nic White, 8 Ita Vaea, 7 Jarrad Butler, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore (c), 1 Scott Sio.
Subs: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Ruan Smith, 18 JP Smith, 19 Jordan Smiler, 20 Blake Enever, 21 Michael Dowsett, 22 Lausii Taliauli, 23 James Dargaville.

Photo: Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images