Rebels breathe life into Super Rugby

The Melbourne Rebels are calling for a swift resolution to Super Rugby's season-long saga after blowing the Australian conference open with a shock win over the Brumbies.

Apart from sending a powerful message to the Australian Rugby Union, who are weighing up whether to cut the Rebels or Western Force from next year's competition, the 19-17 win in Melbourne has also breathed life into the season.

With a record 10 straight derby wins to their credit, the Brumbies seemed to be cruising to Australian conference honours for the second year in a row.

Queensland's drought-breaking 47-34 success against South African franchise, the Kings has trimmed the Brumbies' conference lead to seven points, while the Force - with a game in hand on the pacesetters - are only eight points adrift.

The NSW Waratahs are also now just two wins shy of the Brumbies, who play the Hurricanes in Napier on Friday night.

With Australian sides a collective none from 12 against New Zealand opposition so far in 2017, suddenly the pressure is on the Brumbies to quickly rediscover their form or risk losing control of their finals destiny.