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Rebels rolled by Lions in Super Rugby

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 6/05/2017 Melissa Woods

Melbourne's Super Rugby misery has continued with the Lions inflicting a brutal 37-point defeat at AAMI Park on Saturday afternoon.

The Lions ran in seven tries (and a penalty try) to one in the 47-10 victory, to collect a bonus point and continue their surge at the top of their South African conference.

The Rebels remain anchored at the bottom of the Australian table with just one win for the season.

The Rebels' injury hoodoo hit again just before kick-off, losing in-form flanker Colby Fainga'a with a thigh injury.

Fainga'a had taken over the skipper's armband from Nic Stirzaker, who was one of 15 players sidelined through injury, with Reece Hodge handed the captaincy duties.

Melbourne were never in the hunt, only managing 38 per cent of possession with a faltering attack, while the workload in defence took its toll, missing 29 tackles.

If it wasn't for the non-stop work by Rebels No.8 Amanaki Mafi the scoreline could have been even worse.

Lions flanker Kwagga Smith collected first points after 20 minutes on the back of some sustained pressure and Ross Cronje was in five minutes later.

The halfback ran onto a neat inside ball from hooker Malcolm Marx and stepped around two Rebels to the tryline to open up a 14-0 lead.

Melbourne continued to toil hard and were rewarded when halfback Ben Meehan put through a clever grubber behind the Lions line, which was pounced on by Tom English.

The conversion by Hodge closed the gap to seven points but that blew out just seconds before halftime when the Lions sent the ball wide and winger Courtnal Skosan put on the burners to go past some Rebels forwards for a 19-7 scoreline.

Five Lions tries came in a one-sided second half, including an 80 metre effort from Sylvian Mahuza with the winger bouncing off five Rebels players in a woeful defensive effort.

A penalty try was also awarded in the 62nd minute with Melbourne lock Cullum Retallick yellow-carded for an intentional offside as he tried to prevent a try less than a minute after coming off the bench.

Further tries from Anthony Volmink and Warren Whiteley rounded out the rout.

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