The Melbourne Rebels have gone down 38-20, despite a strong opening half in Sydney.
It was a case of what could’ve been for the away side, with the Waratahs scoring 14 of their points while the Rebels were a player down, adding up to almost a quarter of the game at Allianz Stadium.
Looking the better side for much of the eighty-minute contest, the Rebels were left to rue at least two missed try scoring opportunities in a dominant first-half display.
Despite the defeat, Carter Gordon once again underlined his Wallabies credentials, in an exhilarating display, carving up the Waratahs defence in an enthralling opening half.
The twenty-two-year-old first put Reece Hodge over with a sensational double-pump short ball, before showcasing his brilliant running game to set up Melbourne’s second try moments later to Monty Ioane.
Two tries within one minute saw the home side square the ledger, before a Reece Hodge penalty at the siren saw the Rebels snatch back the lead at the half.
NSW hit the front for the first time five minutes into the second half with their second penalty try and were never again headed.
The Rebels will return to Melbourne Sunday and quickly begin preparation for next Saturday’s crucial clash against the Highlanders in Dunedin.