Ire­land break Aussie hearts

Fiji Sun - - Sport -

Dublin: Ire­land en­dured a fierce fight­back to de­feat Aus­tralia 27-24 and end the Wal­la­bies’ Grand Slam bid at Lans­downe Road yes­ter­day.

The Ir­ish took an early 17-0 lead but re­quired a late coun­ter­at­tack­ing try from Keith Earls to put them ahead for good with 13 min­utes left. The win meant Ire­land de­feated south­ern hemi­sphere pow­ers Aus­tralia, New Zealand and South Africa in a cal­en­dar year for the first time.

The Wal­la­bies, half­way to their first Grand Slam of the home unions in 32 years, blew chance af­ter chance against a makeshift Ir­ish back­line in the sec­ond half, and was illd­is­ci­plined again. They came into the match hav­ing rested key play­ers dur­ing last week’s vic­tory over France. The Ir­ish, by con­trast, were with­out Jonathan Sex­ton, Rob­bie Hen­shaw, and Sean O’Brien, and the in­jury list grew in the first half, as Rob Kear­ney, An­drew Trim­ble, and Jared Payne limped away. Yet Ire­land dom­i­nated the open­ing half against the er­ror-prone Wal­la­bies, and fin­ished stronger. Ire­land 27 (Iain Hen­der­son, Garry Rin­grose, Keith Earls tries; Paddy Jack­son 3 conversions, 2 penal­ties).

Aus­tralia 24 (Dane Haylett-Petty, Te­vita Kuridrani, Se­fanaia Naivalu tries; Bernard Fo­ley 3 conversions, penalty). HT: 17-7. -Planet Rugby

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