Israel Folau scored a brace of tries as the Waratahs clinched a 50-23 bonus-point win over the Rebels in Sydney on Sunday.
For the Waratahs, it was a much-needed fourth win of the season, while the Rebels were condemned to yet another defeat during a disappointing campaign that has seen them record only the solitary victory.
The Waratahs made a strong start to the encounter and scored early through scrumhalf Nick Phipps, but the home team’s discipline then let them down as they conceded a string of penalties.
During that time, the Rebels gained an 11-7 lead as Ben Volavola slotted a couple of penalties, while Amanaki Mafi went over to score.
However, the Waratahs rediscovered their composure in the second quarter and moved into a handy 24-11 lead at half-time after tries to Dean Mumm, Ned Hanigan and Folau just before the break.
Matters continued to ebb and flow early in the second half as Rebels replacement Jonah Placid completed a brace of tries to keep the visitors in the hunt.
However, Folau superbly finished off his second try to settle any nerves, while Michael Hooper, Damien Fitzpatrick and Bryce Hegarty all went over to score late in the game to seal an emphatic win.
Waratahs – Tries: Nick Phipps, Dean Mumm, Ned Hanigan, Israel Folau (2), Michael Hooper, Damien Fitzpatrick, Bryce Hegarty. Conversions: Bernard Foley (5).
Rebels – Tries: Amanaki Mafi, Jonah Placid (2). Conversion: Ben Volavola. Penaties: Volavola (2).
Waratahs – 15 Israel Folau, 14 Taqele Naiyaravoro, 13 Rob Horne, 12 David Horwitz, 11 Cam Clark, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper (c), 6 Ned Hanigan, 5 Will Skelton, 4 Dean Mumm, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tolu Latu, 1 Tom Robertson.
Subs: 16 Damien Fitzpatrick, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 Angus Taavao, 19 David McDuling, 20 Jed Holloway, 21 Jake Gordon, 22 Bryce Hegarty, 23 Irae Simone.
Rebels – 15 Ben Volavola, 14 Jack Maddocks, 13 Mitch Inman, 12 Reece Hodge (c), 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Jackson Garden-Bachop, 9 Ben Meehan, 8 Amanaki Mafi, 7 Sean McMahon, 6 Lopeti Timani, 5 Steve Cummins, 4 Culum Retallick, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 James Hanson, 1 Toby Smith.
Subs: 16 Siliva Siliva, 17 Fereti Sa’aga, 18 Laurie Weeks, 19 Esei Haangana, 20 Colby Fainga’a, 21 Harrison Goddard, 22 Sione Tuipulotu, 23 Jonah Placid.
Photo: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images