Brumbies upset Hurricanes in Super Rugby

Oliver Caffrey
Brumbies upset Hurricanes in Super Rugby

The Brumbies' Super Rugby finals hopes remain alive after an upset 24-12 victory over the Hurricanes - their first win against a New Zealand team since 2016.

They still need to win their last two matches and rely on other results to avoid missing the post-season for the first time in six years, but their triumph over the second-placed Wellington side on Saturday night gives them hope.

Missing key players Allan Alaalatoa, Sam Carter and Lachlan McCaffrey, the Brumbies started slowly but didn't panic as they worked their way into the match at GIO Stadium for their third-straight win.

The Hurricanes, who lost their third-straight match, produced a fast start after captain TJ Perenara scored a freak try by diving to intercept a Joe Powell pass in the corner.

The Brumbies didn't drop their heads as centre Kyle Godwin crossed five minutes later to reduce the deficit to two points after captain Christian Lealiifano missed the conversion.

The Hurricanes, who went to Canberra without stars Beauden Barrett, Vaea Fifita, Ardie Savea and Brad Shields, took a 12-5 lead into the break through a try from Julian Savea.

The game didn't go to the script of most trans-Tasman games in the past three years as the Brumbies hit the lead following early tries in the second half to hooker Folau Fainga'a and lock Rory Arnold.

Fainga'a's effort made the Brumbies the first Australian team to reach 1000 Super Rugby tries and third in competition history behind the Hurricanes and Crusaders.

The Hurricanes held on despite Blade Thomson being sin-binned shortly after the Brumbies' third try but winger Andrew Muirhead's conversion in the 78th minute sealed the match.

A measured Brumbies coach Dan McKellar said it was an "enjoyable" win and was pleased his team was starting to click after a tough run in the middle of the season.

"We had a plan to come here and play tonight. We just had to adjust and look at opportunities down the short side, which we did in the second half and we capitalised," McKellar said.

"I'm happy for the group. We've worked really hard over the last month."

The only concern for the Brumbies was a shoulder injury to Wallabies prop Scott Sio, who went off early and never returned to the field.

Hurricanes coach Chris Boyd called it a "tough day at the office".

"I don't think there's any excuse," Boyd said.

"We gave away too many penalties, allowed (the Brumbies) territory because they just kicked to the corner and drive."