Wallaroos lose to Ireland in rugby opener


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    Australia have begun their women’s rugby union World Cup campaign with a 19-17 loss to host nation Ireland.

    The new-look Wallaroos conceded the first try when Irish flyhalf Nora Stapleton crossed after 20 minutes in the pool C clash in Dublin on Wednesday.

    But winger Mahalia Murphy hit back eight minutes later after Australia won a lineout on the back of a midfield break by Sevens star Sharni Williams.

    Speedy debutante Murphy, one of nine changes from the last-start heavy loss to Canada in June, received a long pass from fullback Samantha Treherne 25m from the line, slicing through defenders to score untouched.

    Treherne missed the conversion, helping Ireland to a 7-5 lead in half-time.

    The visitors took a three-point lead when co-captain Shannon Parry drove over in the 56th minute, with Treherne again failing to add the extras.

    But world No.5 Ireland, who dominated the match for territory and possession, hit back with two tries to lead 19-10 with nine minutes remaining.

    Wallaroos substitute Ashleigh Hewson scored in the 73rd to set up a tense finale.

    But the hosts held on for a perfect start to their campaign as Stapleton’s boot proved decisive, slotting two from three conversions.

    Wallaroos coach Paul Verrell said his world No.6 side had improved from their winless Four Nations tour of New Zealand two months ago.

    “The team matched it with the Irish and for the majority of the match and matched them in physically and put in a solid defensive display,” Verrell said.

    “The Irish controlled possession for a large portion of the second half and kept the ball inside our own half and that prevented us from creating any real opportunities.”

    Australia will begin preparations for their August 14 clash with France, who lead the group after a a 72-14 win over Japan.

    Canada beat Hong Kong 98-0, while New Zealand fullback Selica Winiata bagged a hat-trick to help the four-time champions overrun Wales 44-12 in pool A

    In pool B, England beat Spain 56-5 and the United States defeated Italy 24-12.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (13)

    • Roar Guru

      August 10th 2017 @ 10:08am
      Poth Ale said | August 10th 2017 @ 10:08am | ! Report

      Pity Oz didn’t get over the line. The headline
      ‘Murphy and Shannon score to beat Ireland’ would have made my day. 🙂

      • Roar Guru

        August 10th 2017 @ 4:32pm
        Machooka said | August 10th 2017 @ 4:32pm | ! Report

        Congrats on ya win Poth… and it’d be nice for Ireland to make the semis as they’re hosts 🙂

    • Roar Guru

      August 10th 2017 @ 12:11pm
      Shop said | August 10th 2017 @ 12:11pm | ! Report

      It was a great game to watch. Roos badly need a goal kicker as easy points were forfeited and a kicker that can gain more than 5 meters on penalties. Big swing in the game was when the Roos coughed up an easy turnover after their second try and Ireland hit straight back.

      Still, better than a lot than I have seen from the Wallabies of late.

      • Roar Guru

        August 10th 2017 @ 4:27pm
        Machooka said | August 10th 2017 @ 4:27pm | ! Report

        Great minds Shop… although in saying that it was so obvious the Wallaroo need some serious effective kickers.
        Field and goal.

        Other than that it was an excellent performance from our young inexperienced girls. They’ll definitely be better off for the hit-out.

    • Roar Guru

      August 10th 2017 @ 1:55pm
      DaniE said | August 10th 2017 @ 1:55pm | ! Report

      Really enjoyed the game, the Wallaroos were remarkably improved from the four nations tournament in June. Imagine what could have happened if they’d had more than 6 test matches from the last World Cup in 2014?

      • Roar Guru

        August 10th 2017 @ 4:30pm
        Machooka said | August 10th 2017 @ 4:30pm | ! Report

        Finally got through the game today Dani… and really enjoyed it.

        Very physical. Some great hits. But lots to learn.

        And yes… some more games are much needed!

        • Roar Guru

          August 10th 2017 @ 5:43pm
          DaniE said | August 10th 2017 @ 5:43pm | ! Report

          Money first Chook. Money buys time, which means training, games, combinations, reward for effort.

          Experience tells… Scrumqueens on Twitter had the crazy stat comparing one of the English prop’s 124 caps to the Wallaroos 15 having 90 in total ? But that gives Australia’s efforts last night a special shine. So much potential.

          • Roar Guru

            August 10th 2017 @ 6:00pm
            Machooka said | August 10th 2017 @ 6:00pm | ! Report

            Potential plus. Spades. Heaps.

            Money… yep, need more money!

            • August 11th 2017 @ 12:21am
              Bakkies said | August 11th 2017 @ 12:21am | ! Report

              They need games. The European teams get the 6 Nations and AIs. The Irish teams also have a national league and inter pros.

    • Roar Pro

      August 10th 2017 @ 4:54pm
      Crazy Horse said | August 10th 2017 @ 4:54pm | ! Report

      An absolute ripper of a match. If you haven’t watched it yet do yourself a favour.

      Well done both teams but what was Vettel thinking leaving his kicker on the bench? It cost us the game.

      • Roar Guru

        August 10th 2017 @ 5:46pm
        DaniE said | August 10th 2017 @ 5:46pm | ! Report

        I wasn’t really surprised to see Hewson named on the bench, thought they needed more experience for such a tough first hit out. But the teams have a turnaround of 3 days between matches, so they’re all guarding their stamina somewhat. Hewson to hopefully start against France.

        • Roar Guru

          August 10th 2017 @ 6:08pm
          DaniE said | August 10th 2017 @ 6:08pm | ! Report

          I was surprised – not wasn’t! Gobsmacked, even

    • August 11th 2017 @ 7:37am
      Kevin said | August 11th 2017 @ 7:37am | ! Report

      Great game to watch. I was surprised by the great tackling, hard hits and hard runining with ball in hand by both forwards and backs. Will definitely be watching the next game.

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