Reds seek solace at home after defeat

RUGBY UNION: Queensland Reds coach Richard Graham cannot wait for Saturday night's home game against the Stormers after his team was on the end of a lopsided penalty count in the 23-20 loss to the Lions in Johannesburg.

Clearly frustrated after the match, his team's second defeat in two games in the Republic, Graham (pictured) admitted he could not comprehend how referee Stuart Berry could find a 19-4 penalty count in favour of the home side.

The Reds led 20-6 at half-time despite being down 9-3 in the penalties, but a 10-1 count in the second half, plus being forced to play two men down in the final minutes, proved too much for Graham's men.

"I'm struggling to understand this. But what can you do. The game's gone," he said. "It has been a tough start to the season, with four of our first five games on the road, so it will be good to get back to Brisbane and focus on the Stormers."

Round six results turned the competition on its head, with the Western Force producing the upset of the season with an 18-15 victory over the previously-unbeaten Chiefs in Perth.

It was the first time since 2007 that the Force, beaten by the Waratahs and Brumbies in the opening two rounds, had won three Super Rugby games in succession. The Sharks also lost their first game of the season, beaten 23-19 by the Bulls in Pretoria.


Highlanders 35 (Burleigh, Osborne tries; Sopoaga 7 pen, 2 con) bt Hurricanes 31 (Barrett 2, B Franks tries; Barrett 4 pen, 2 con) in Dunedin on Friday night

Waratahs 32 (Folau 2, Alofa, Betham tries; Foley 2 pen, 3 con) bt Rebels 8 (Higginbotham try; Hegarty pen) in Sydney on Friday night

Blues: 40 (Luatua, Moala, Li, Woodcock tries; Hickey 4 pen, 4 con) bt Cheetahs 30 (Prinsloo, Hendricks, Daniller tries; Watts 2 pen, con; Goosen pen, 2 con) in Auckland on Saturday night

Brumbies 25 (Coleman 2 tries, penalty try; White 2 pen, 2 con) bt Stormers 15 (Vermeulen, de Jongh tries; Grant pen, con) in Canberra on Saturday night

Western Force 18 (Hodgson 2 tries; Ebersohn 2 pen, con) bt Chiefs 15 (Anscombe 4 pen, Cruden, pen) in Perth on Saturday night

Bulls 23 (Du Plessis, Engelbrecht tries; Potgieter pen, 2 con, drop goal; Pollard pen) bt Sharks 19 (Alberts try; Steyn 4 pen; Swiel con) in Pretoria on Saturday night

Lions 23 (Mapoe, Skosan tries; Boshoff 3 pen, 2 con) bt Reds 20 (Cooper 2 tries; Cooper 2 pen, 2 con) in Johannesburg on Saturday night