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Third straight for Reds

Monday, April 28, 2014

BRISBANEP - Will Genia faces time on the sidelines, but the bigger worry for the wilting Queensland Reds is how can they turn around their worst season in five years.

The Reds fell to their third straight Super Rugby loss — their poorest streak since the second-last finish in 2009 under Phil Mooney — with a 35-21 hammering by the Hurricanes in Wellington.

The scoreline flattered Queensland, who conceded five tries to two in a performance that builds pressure on new coach Richard Graham to lead an immediate revival.

Looking a shadow of the team that won 11 of its last 14 games against Kiwi opponents dating back to their 2011 championship triumph, Graham's men were overpowered and outpaced by the Hurricanes.

They had little answer to the home side's freewheeling attacking game after fighting tooth and nail for a 14-10 halftime lead.

Vice-captain Genia was a major casualty after the break as he limped off with an ankle injury, while halves partner Quade Cooper revived memories of his last nightmare visit to Westpac Stadium.

Cooper was at his Jekyll-and-Hyde best/worst in a forgettable second half by the Reds.

After a cool and calculated playmaking display early, the brain explosions and clangers of his 2011 World Cup quarter-final shocker returned.

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