Wal­la­bies get pay­back with dom­i­nant fin­ish

Sunday Tasmanian - - Classifieds - JAMIE PANDARAM

A SU­PERB sec­ond-half dis­play has de­liv­ered Aus­tralia’s first Rugby Cham­pi­onship win of the year, de­mol­ish­ing Ar­gentina 45-20.

Aus­tralia scored 35 points in the sec­ond half af­ter trail­ing 13-10 at the break.

Two de­feats to New Zealand and a draw with South Africa had piled the pres­sure on Aus­tralia to de­liver a re­sult in Can­berra, and those nerves weren’t eased af­ter a sloppy first half.

Wal­la­bies coach Michael Cheika had be­moaned his team’s in­tent when in­ter- viewed by FoxS­ports from the coach’s box 10 min­utes into the sec­ond half.

“There’s no ur­gency, I’m not sure we re­alise we’re play­ing in a Test match,” Cheika said.

It was as though Cheika’s words were be­ing broad­cast on loud­speaker, be­cause within four min­utes the Wal­la­bies had scored two tries and it kick­started an im­pres­sive pointscor­ing spree that was much needed by this group.

Af­ter the Springboks were ham­mered 57-0 by the All Blacks ear­lier in the evening, the Wal­la­bies’ next match against South Africa in Bloem- fontein in a fort­night sud­denly looks very winnable.

Aus­tralia’s bonus-point win still leaves them third in the com­pe­ti­tion, how­ever a suc­cess­ful tour in South Africa and Ar­gentina could see them fin­ish sec­ond.

In the four-team Rugby Cham­pi­onship, the All Blacks bully and dom­i­nate, and the other three teams play a mini tour­na­ment hop­ing not to be the worst, and that ap­pears to be Ar­gentina again.

The Pu­mas were dom­i­nant in ter­ri­tory and pos­ses­sion in the first half, with Aus­tralia strug­gling to find their way into the op­po­si­tion half.

Ar­gentina’s half­back Martin Lan­dajo scored the open­ing try in the 24th minute, div­ing over from the base of the ruck af­ter a sus­tained raid on the Aus­tralian line.

There was con­tro­versy with the de­ci­sion as Agustin Creevy grabbed Ned Hani­gan at the base of the ruck be­fore Lan­dajo scored.

But af­ter see­ing re­plays ref­eree John Lacey was con­vinced Aus­tralia’s blind­side was not un­duly ob­structed and awarded the five-pointer.

Is­rael Fo­lau hit back five min­utes later for Aus­tralia, com­plet­ing a sweep­ing at­tack­ing move that went from left to right be­fore the full­back was free down the touch­line.

The Pu­mas’ of­fload­ing game caused prob­lems close to the ruck for Aus­tralia, and they missed 17 tack­les in the open­ing 40 min­utes.

Af­ter Cheika’s “ur­gency” call, Sekope Kepu barged over from the base of a ruck in the 50th, and Fo­lau’s sec­ond try came three min­utes later fol­low­ing a bril­liant mid­field off­load from Rob Sim­mons to Will Ge­nia be­fore the ball went wide.

With that score, Fo­lau be­came the first Wal­laby in his­tory to record four dou­bles in a sin­gle year.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.