2020 Super Rugby AU, Week 6: Top 3 overall players from the Waratahs v Reds game

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Tonight entirely belonged to the Waratahs at home in the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The Reds may have emerged out of nothing at times in the final 40, but it’s still far from enough to bounce back.

We’ll see the Top 3 overall performers based on tonight’s match of the round in Week 6 of Super Rugby AU.

Jake Gordon

He demonstrated more than just his usual half-back role in the Sky Blue shirt.

When the Reds struggled with the finishing, Gordon cleared out nicely via the kicking.

Plus, the running via the assist in the channels from James Ramm helped him score that first TRY.

Then another Reds’ mistake with the fumble and poor scrummaging this time saw Gordon quickly tapped and go.

Credit to his visionary when the opposition complained because it ran louder when Gordon quickly added another big score.

And again, when Scott Maloua couldn’t find support on the far right, the Waratahs did capitalize on the line-out correctly with another fantastic finish.

The close running with some help alongside Will Harrison via the short ball rounded Gordon’s hat-trick score.

Michael Hooper

He pretty much was behind the scenes action that planted the Waratahs’ free-flowing spree upfront.

When the Reds struggled to crack with the finishing plus throw-ins, he muscled in that build-up play and the driving maul that helped Tom Horton successfully touch down early in the 2nd half.

It helped Jake Gordon find some time to navigate the channels that saw Gordon’s backline buddies unpack that pace and footwork into space that successfully secured a few touchdowns.

But it’s not the end of the story just yet in Hooper’s contribution via the attack.

Hooper can also stuff up the opposition build-up play defensively, as mentioned a little earlier with the poor throw-in.

His physicality & the arms reach exposed the Reds to create a few fumbles and block the opposition No.9 feeds with little support.

That way, it gathers momentum for Hooper to help the Waratahs win penalties and have a go via the turnovers.

Like Jake Gordon, Hooper is an all-round player that blocks the Reds’ finishing job before releasing the backline past their gate.

He may have received that minor damage on his left eye after he came off in the 66th minute.

But you can’t dispute his hard work as Hooper wins one of the three overall performers based on tonight’s game.

Liam Wright

He’s always loud and clear regarding the leadership side of things.

It helped Wright do well defensively with his physicality a plus to build up the attack.

However, the rest of this team didn’t do well with the lack of support via the finishing.

It created fumbles, difficulty finding some space with no hands up, poor throw-ins from Brandon Paenga-Amosa, and ill-discipline.

The second half did improve on some areas with the addition of Alex Mafi and Tate McDermott, where James O’Connor helped Jack Hardy secure his first Super Rugby touch down.

So does the consolation TRY and conversion towards the final siren from O’Connor himself.

But again, the poor discipline and a lack of finishing help, in the beginning, frustrated Wright in the end.

Wright needs more support to split the opposition half and lessen the ill-discipline for the best chance to secure points next time.

What’s next?

The Reds will host the Melbourne Rebels next Saturday night at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.

It will be all on the line for them to bounce back and maintain Top 3 in the standings for a second shot in the Playoffs.

Speaking on an all Queensland hub, the Waratahs will travel to the Gold Coast at Robina Stadium on Friday night v the Western Force.

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