David Pocock sidelined with head knocked in Brumbies' season opener

Jack Maddocks touching down for the Melbourne Rebels who won 34-27 in Canberra

Jack Maddocks touching down for the Melbourne Rebels who won 34-27 in Canberra

Cooper was frozen out by Queensland Reds coach Brad Thorn last year and ended up playing lower-level club rugby in Brisbane before he joined the Rebels on a one-year contract.

After an attacking first-half which finished with the Brumbies leading 22-19, the Rebels clamped down on defence as hooker Anaru Rangi and winger Jack Maddocks crossed for tries after the break before Brumbies lock Sam Carter's consolation effort.

Brumbies team mate David Pocock also suffered an early exit from Friday's game after he suffered another head injury.

Both teams were spreading the ball wide, and the Rebels' Jack Maddocks scooped up a bad kick from Irae Simone inside his 22 to score an easy try to put the visitors in front.

Matt Phillip got the Rebels' third of the half, with Rory Arnold and Allan Ala'alatoa also touching down to keep the Brumbies in the topsy-turvy match.

"He played to a framework that he's helped create, that he believes in, and I think he enjoyed himself out there".

8 miners rescued in Zimbabwe; others remained trapped
Meanwhile, eight miners were rescued in the morning with the first survivor said to have been rescued at around 07:10 hours. At least 8 miners been rescued thus far. "So we are here now waiting for his recovery", she told AFP.

"Really proud of the boys, we worked really hard for that", said Rebels skipper Dane Haylett-Petty, who singled out Cooper - who booted three conversions and a penalty - for praise.

"I felt like they (Genia and Cooper) didn't contribute as much as I thought they would, I felt we were in control, but the times we weren't they punished us", Lealiifano said.

Brumbies head coach Dan McKellar says he can't guarantee Pocock will be ready to take on the Chiefs next Saturday night after he failed his head injury assessment.

Toni Pulu's hopes of playing for Australia at the Rugby World Cup have suffered a major blow with the winger expected to have surgery on Monday to fix a fractured cheekbone he sustained following a head clash in his ACT Brumbies debut.

"He's obviously had a concussion on the [Wallabies'] Spring tour as well so we'll just do what's in the best interest of Dave", McKellar told AAP.

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