Wallabies butcher a Test win over the All Blacks
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Flawless goal-kicking by Mike Harris inspired the Wallabies at Suncorp last night, but dumb second half rugby let the All Blacks off the hook in an 18-all draw.
It was a travesty to watch.
Holding a match-winning 15-6 lead at the 51st minute, the Wallabies gave away four dumb penalties in 18 minutes to gift-wrap the lead to All Black sharp-shooter Dan Carter 18-15.
Two of the serial offenders all night – flanker Michael Hooper, and half Nick Phipps – should have been dragged immediately for their stupidity in two of these four penalties.
Hooper copped a yellow card for a blatant late tacke on All Black half Aaron Smith, Phipps was three metres off-side when Adam Ashley-Cooper spilled a no pressure high ball.
To compound the major elementary mistakes, the Wallaby forwards played pointless pick-and-go tactics for 28 phases from the 78th minute to the 82nd at 18-all when a Kurtley Beale, or Harris, drop goal to win was so obvious an option.
Amazingly, former Wallaby captain George Gregan made excuses for the blunder, saying it was inexperience.
Utter bollocks. It was inexcusable, these Wallabies are supposed to be internationals – 10-year-olds would know a drop goal was the sole selection.
Having rightfully dropped the bucket on the Wallabies, they played more than enough good rugby to win, and deserved the victory.
Bookies had the All Blacks at a short $1.15 pre-game, the Wallabies rank outsiders at $5.50 in a two-horse race.
Translated no-one gave the Wallabies a ghost of a chance to beat the world champions, but the men-in-gold should have cruised to victory in what would have been an epic win.
Just about every Wallaby had their moment of glory, and brain explosion, in the 80 tension filled minutes. Much the same can be said of the All Blacks.
So on paper a draw was a just result.
But even die-hard Kiwis would be the first to admit their team dodged a bullet and still could have won had Carter landed his snap drop goal in five minutes of overtime.
There would have been no justice in that result.
Damn it, the Wallabies should have won. The draw leaves a mighty sour taste.
And the Wallabies have no-one but themselves to blame.
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