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- 8th Mar 2014
- KO 08:40
- Ground: Subiaco Oval, Perth
Super Rugby: Western Force blitz Melbourne Rebels in Perth
The way we controlled the game, our defence was back to where it was last year and that is what won us the game.
Force captain Matt Hodgson
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Matt Hodgson celebrated his 100th Super Rugby appearance in style as Western Force produced a stunning first-half showing to blitz Melbourne Rebels in a 32-7 rout.
The Rebels were coming off an emphatic 35-14 win over the Cheetahs last weekend, while the Force were easily beaten 27-14 by the ACT Brumbies, but celebrated Hodgson's landmark appearance with a fine display.
That the 32-year-old flanker scored one of their bonus-point tries only added to the occasion in Perth.
The Force flew out of the blocks in the opening 30 minutes and scored the first 32 points of the match to blow the Rebels away.
They were up and running early on, with Alby Mathewson darting over with just three minutes gone, with Sias Ebersohn adding the extras.
Another try followed shortly after as Luke Morahan opened his account for the franchise after some good lineout play, with Ebersohn again on the money with the goal.
Two penalties from Ebersohn ensured the scoreboard kept ticking over and took the Force out to 20-0, with Hodgson then giving the fans what they wanted as he touched down.
Ebersohn's goal extended the advantage to 27 points and when Angus Cottrell went in before the break, the Perth outfit had scored a try bonus point for the first time in 28 outings.
After such a devastating spell of intensity they were always likely to drop off and that was what they did in the second half with Ebersohn, who failed to improve Cottrell's try, missing with two more penalty attempts.
The Rebels hardly pressed a claim for a comeback, though, and did not stir until the death when Telusa Veainu scored after the hooter.
Force captain Matt Hodgson said the Force were determined to show they were better than their two losses this season suggested.
"The way we came out showed people how we do play football," he said.
"The way we controlled the game, our defence was back to where it was last year and that is what won us the game."Super 15. Click here to bet.