Super Rugby Pacific: Hurricanes thrash Reds

Tom Lynagh’s Super Rugby Pacific debut started well before a shocking Queensland collapse delivered the Reds a “reality check” in their first game of the new season.

Having led 13-6 in the first-half, the Reds folded meekly to be whipped 47-13 by the ruthless Hurricanes in Townsville on Saturday night.

Outscored six tries to one, the Reds again failed to deliver against Kiwi opposition.

Then Queenslanders lost six times to New Zealand teams last year, as well four from five in 2021 to trans-Tasman sides.

A lack of discipline, which has also hounded the Queenslanders in recent seasons, was again evident, with two Reds players – forwards Ryan Smith and Seru Uru – both yellow carded and each spending 10 minutes in the sin-bin.

It wasn’t the fairytale 19-year-old flyhalf Lynagh – whose father, Reds and Wallabies great Michael Lynagh, arrived in Queensland from England on Saturday morning to see his son in action – had hoped for.

“It was tough,” Tom Lynagh told Channel Nine.

“We ran out of steam in the second half, which is pretty disappointing.

“We’re happy with how the first 40 (minutes) went, (but) the second 40 … we need to fix our discipline and start winning games.”

Lynagh was quick to contribute to the Reds’ cause, kicking two penalty goals to give the hosts a 6-0 lead after 12 minutes.

He also put up a cross field kick that eventually led to fullback Jordan Petaia scoring out wide in the 29th minute, Lynagh’s conversion was superb to give his side a 13-6 lead.

However, the Hurricanes then took control.

Outside centre Billy Proctor scored out wide in the 31st minute after running over the top of Lynagh and Queensland skipper Tate McDermott.

Barrett converted before kicking a 35th-minute penalty goal following a late nudge from Reds lock Smith that led to his sin-binning.

Queensland’s disciplinary problems continued after half-time, with flanker Uru conceding a 44th-minute penalty try which resulted in him being sent to the sin-bin and the Hurricanes opening up a 10-point lead.

The visitors extended their advantage in the 54th minute when halfback Cam Roigard, who scored under the posts.

Barrett’s conversion put the Hurricanes 30-13 ahead and the game was as good as over.

Despite the defeat, Lynagh said it was “pretty special” having his father in the crowd.

“It was nice to see him just before the game. I’m sure I’ll remember this for a long time,” he said.

McDermott said Lynagh was “ really impressive”.

“All we asked him to do was be loud, and he was that in spades,” the Reds halfback said.

“ He kicked really well. “He put his body on the line. We’ve just got to do better as a side to support him.”

McDermott was otherwise left to lament a “very disappointing” Queensland performance.

“It was a bit of a reality check,” he said.

“At least we know where we are as a side, and we’ve got to get back on the horse because it’s only round one.”.

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