Lolesio boots Brumbies past Reds in one-point thriller

The ACT Brumbies have edged the Queensland Reds in a one-point thriller, Tom Wright scoring twice as the visitors retained their status as Australian Super Rugby front-runners.

The Reds led by nine on Saturday in Brisbane after their rolling maul created two second-half tries and Rhys Van Nek was yellow-carded for a professional foul.

But fullback Wright scored his second try while the Brumbies were a man down and five-eighth Noah Lolesio drilled a tough conversion and go-ahead penalty in a 20-19 win.

Lolesio was a perfect four-from-four off the tee as the Brumbies moved to 5-1 and won consecutive games at Suncorp Stadium for the first time in 10 years.

"That was a pretty strong statement from our boys that we're not going to go away," coach Stephen Larkham said of Wright's try.

"And good management at the end.

"At no stage was the game in anyone's hands. It was always going down to the wire and Noah's kicking was outstanding."

Their victory was soured by a likely season-ending ankle dislocation and fracture for Test hooker Lachlan Lonergan, caught in a Tate McDermott tackle that drew the ire of Larkham.

The Reds flew out of the blocks and had a try through Josh Flook inside three minutes, the opportunistic centre again on the spot to finish a neat sequence that began with Tom Lynagh's sharp inside ball to lock Seru Uru.

Wright had his first after two costly Jock Campbell knock-ons, the Reds unable to convert their hot start into more points.

Lachlan Lonergan (right) injured in tackle by Reds' Tate McDermott.
Lachlan Lonergan of the Brumbies is injured in a tackle by the Reds' Tate McDermott. (Darren England/AAP PHOTOS)

A long-range Lolesio penalty kick gave them a three-point edge at halftime and the visitors, in front of nearly 18,000 fans, applied the early pressure after the break.

The Reds repelled that and scored twice but Wright had the reply, brushing McDermott in a one-on-one to score his second and make it a two-point game with 18 minutes to play.

Lolesio's boot put the Brumbies back in front after 70 minutes, the Reds earning a last-ditch shot when the pack won a scrum penalty against the feed.

But they went nowhere in 10 phases, the Brumbies' defensive line pushing the Reds backwards and eventually pressuring them into a mistake.

The Reds forwards pushed through another scrum and the ball bobbled out, but there was no penalty and the Brumbies held on to possession to see the clock out.

It marks the second straight loss for the Reds (3-3), while the Brumbies (5-1) remain nestled in the competition's top four.

Reds coach Les Kiss admitted their field management and a "coat of paint" on their last missed conversion had hurt them ahead of a next-round bye.

"I guess that's why the Brumbies are the best team in the country at the moment," he said.

"We've got to learn to turn those little moments into our moments.

"I won't accept any negativity; there's a lot of good stuff that came out of that game ... this team is real."