Super Rugby Pacific: Hurricanes overcome Jordie Barrett red card to defeat Reds in golden point thriller

The Hurricanes have overcome a red card to centurion and co-captain Jordie Barrett to snatch a 38-33 victory over the Reds in a golden point thriller at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.  

In a see-saw clash that saw both sides trade the lead on more than one occasion, Barrett's exit looked to be the final nail in the Hurricanes' coffin.  

But exceptional efforts from fullback Ruben Love, halfback Cam Roigard and No.8 Brayden Iose kept their side in contention, before reserve prop Pasilio Tosi saw Clark Laidlaw's side snatch a dramatic win.  

Barrett of all people will be breathing a sigh of relief, after his 100th Super Rugby match for the Hurricanes ended in disaster.   

Notching a century of games for his side, Barrett was shown a yellow card for a clash of heads with Reds fullback Jordan Petaia, which was upgraded to red upon review.

Jordie Barrett was sent off for the Hurricanes.
Jordie Barrett was sent off for the Hurricanes. Photo credit: Getty Images

But after playing out 20 minutes without conceding, the Hurricanes were restored to their full quota, and came home as the stronger of the two sides.   

Victory sends the Hurricanes second on the Super Rugby Pacific ladder after the first two games, sitting behind competition leaders the Chiefs on points differential.   

As a sign of one of the most exciting cores of young players in the competition, the Hurricanes took just five minutes to open the scoring,  

An exchange with Josh Moorby on the right wing saw Love cross over to score, as part of another impressive display in the No.15 jersey.  

In response, the Reds equalised through No.8 Harry Wilson, who benefited from a lineout drive to find the tryline in the left corner, before the Hurricanes returned fire in a see-saw clash.  

A clever backline move that saw the ball move through the hands had Love free Kini Naholo on the left, and the winger showed his strength to hold off his opposite to score.

Tate McDermott is tackled.
Tate McDermott is tackled. Photo credit: Getty Images

But with neither side able to pull away, Zane Nonggorr went over from another lineout drive, before halfback Tate McDermott put the Reds ahead by a converted try with an excellent finish in the corner under Love's challenge to lead 19-12.  

With the final play of the first half, returning All Blacks halfback Roigard's quick work saw him take a quick tap and score under the posts, and send both sides into halftime locked at 19-all.  

After the break, the Reds took the lead once more, as a kind bounce fell for Josh Flook, and put the centre into a gap to race through and score.  

As had been the case all game, the Hurricanes responded through Love, as a raging Brayden Iose took the ball to the line, before Roigard found his fullback, who danced through to equalise again at 26-all.  

However, with scores level, disaster struck for the Hurricanes.  

As Jordan Petaia fielded a Barrett kick, the pair clashed heads in the tackle, as replays didn't favour the Hurricanes midfielder.  

After initially being shown yellow under review, the lack of mitigation meant Barrett was upgraded to a red card, and the Hurricanes reduced to 14 for 20 minutes.  

And when hooker Matt Faessler went over to give the Reds a 33-26 lead, it looked like the Hurricanes' night was done.   

Even at a disadvantage though, the Hurricanes didn't lie down, as Roigard equalised yet again with a dart at the tryline, before Brett Cameron's boot locked the scores at 33-all.

Back at full strength, a break from Matt Proctor in the 80th minute gave the Hurricanes fantastic field position – only for a Reds turnover to end any chance of snatching victory.  

As the Hurricanes won the toss and opted for territory, a turnover from Peter Lakai proved vital, and allowed the side the chance for victory in the sudden death golden point passage.  

And despite the dearth of attacking options at their disposal, it was Tosi who had the final say, and crashed over to see the Hurricanes escape Melbourne with what could be a defining victory in their season.  

The Hurricanes will return to New Zealand, where they'll begin preparations for their first Kiwi derby of 2024, against the Blues in Wellington next Saturday.  

Hurricanes 38 (Love 2, Naholo, Roigard 2, Tosi tries; Cameron 4 conversions)  

Reds 33 (Wilson, Nonggorr, McDermott, Flook, Faessler tries; Lynagh 4 conversions)