Bledisloe blowout a damning indictment of Australian rugby

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    Both Micheal Cheika and Michael Hooper expressed frustrations during the week at the seemingly defeatist attitude which existed in the public towards the Wallabies and their ambitions to end the All Blacks’ Bledisloe supremacy.

    All the wash-up from Wallabies vs All Blacks Bledisloe 1:
    » LORD: Rugby is an 80-minute game
    » Match report: All Blacks wallop Wallabies
    » What changes should Australia make for Bledisloe 2?
    » Vote in our DIY Wallabies player ratings
    » WATCH: Highlights from Bledisloe 1
    » WATCH: Michael Cheika’s post game comments
    » Re-live the match with our live blog

    Saturday night showed that the public’s scepticism was more than warranted. This is a bad rugby team. And the All Blacks are a good rugby team.

    I wrote a piece on Friday which highlighted five key areas that the Wallabies needed to nail if they were to stand any chance against the All Blacks. The number one point among those was defensive organisation. The Wallabies flunked that test. Badly.

    As expected, the Wallabies began the game with the defensive strategy employed by the Waratahs this season under the tutelage of now Wallabies’ defence coach Nathan Grey – with nominated ball rushers pressuring the first and second receivers with the defensive line behind sliding laterally to cover.

    Much like the Waratahs this season, that strategy was picked apart at will by the All Blacks as the Wallabies’ nominated rushers continually slipped off tackles.

    For all the criticism of Michael Cheika and his selections and tactics – much of it warranted – the fact that he can’t rely on seasoned professional rugby players to make basic tackles tells you everything about where this team and rugby in this country is at.

    Let’s be clear, many of these ‘professionals’ are so in name only. The Wallabies made 57 tackles in the first half and missed 35.

    ‘Professional’ rugby players don’t fall off 60 per cent of tackles. That is an embarrassing statistic and the All Blacks looked almost embarrassed at the ease with which they were strolling to their 40-6 half time lead.

    Whatever line speed the Wallabies defenders had displayed in the first half had well and truly disappeared by the 25th minute, and from that point the All Blacks were free to do as they pleased.

    Ryan Crotty New Zealand Rugby Union Championship Bledisloe Cup All Blacks 2017

    (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

    The British and Irish Lions had success against the All Blacks by wrapping up the ball in contact, which cuts down their ability to offload and play up-tempo.

    The All Blacks hardly needed to offload against the retreating Wallabies defensive line, as offloads are only required when a tackle is actually being made.

    The Wallabies saved some face in the second half, but make no mistake, those were ‘garbage time’ scores; the All Blacks had long since checked out of the game and were mentally boarding the plane home. The job was done.

    The other key area in which the Wallabies fluffed their lines was ball security. The All Blacks will destroy you if you turn the ball over unexpectedly, and the Wallabies gave them plenty of opportunities to show off their prowess at the counter-attacking game.

    Both Rieko Ioane and Damian McKenzie scored tries immediately on the back of basic handling errors from the Wallabies.

    The fact that the best fifteen players that Australia can muster contain half a dozen who can’t accurately throw or successfully catch a pass in the face of pressure is another damning indictment on the state of the game here.

    Cheika cannot remain free of scrutiny, despite his players’ failings, as his selection of Samu Kerevi at outside centre proved to be the defensive disaster many had predicted it to be, while the ‘mobile’ Ned Hannigan looked decidedly lightweight at Bledisloe Cup level.

    Hannigan tried hard, but simply providing an effective lineout jumper option is not sufficient grounds for international selection. You cannot carry passengers at this level.

    Those questioning the retiring Stephen Moore’s selection in a side supposedly in the process of building for the 2019 World Cup will not have been placated by a performance which saw him contribute next to nothing in either attack or defence. In fact the only tackle of note he made resulted in a penalty for not releasing the tackled player.

    One shining light for the Wallabies was the performance of Kurtley Beale, who looked sharp with ball in hand. Bernard Foley has enjoyed a long run in the 10 jersey for Australia in recent years, partly due to the fact that nobody has been able to mount a solid enough case to replace him. Beale will now offer a genuine alternative should Cheika lose faith with the misfiring Foley.

    The Wallabies will head to Dunedin next weekend for mission impossible and will no doubt be on the end of another drubbing, and it is becoming harder and harder to even visualise what the end product of Cheika’s plan looks like.

    Whatever that plan may be, rest assured that it will never reach fruition while the Wallabies continue to defend like turnstiles.

    Jack Quigley
    Jack Quigley

    A long time sports writer and podcaster, Jack has spent the majority of his media career covering football and rugby. He recently joined The Roar on the back of penning a viral Facebook rant aimed at the Wallabies which attracted 60,000 likes and more than 6,000 shares. You can follow him on Twitter @Jack_Quigley.

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    The Crowd Says (449)

    • August 20th 2017 @ 6:31am
      Dan in Devon said | August 20th 2017 @ 6:31am | ! Report

      The first AB try came courtesy of a very poor Foley exit kick. Foley’s exit kicking was a major problem during the England test matches- his technique means he often gets little power and has poor accuracy. Why hasn’t the exit kicking been addressed? And why did Cheika wait til the second half to bring on Kurindrani? The centre channel was a disaster zone by the 24th minute – at which point my two sons said they couldn’t watch the game anymore. And if Hannigan and Phipps are in our best 23 next week …we’ll at least we have Nic White playing for us in Devon!

      • August 20th 2017 @ 9:29am
        Jameswm said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:29am | ! Report

        Hodge starts instead of Rona. That solves some exit kicking issues.

        Many (like me) suggested this. Why are we Roarers getting selections right more than the coaching staff?

        • August 20th 2017 @ 9:39am
          Connor33 said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:39am | ! Report


          • August 20th 2017 @ 11:26am
            PiratesRugby said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:26am | ! Report

            What about Folau’s defence? Got beaten on the outside like a complete rookie. Foley is a complete turnstile. Beale can defend okay but made mistakes (not alone in that).
            How long can we carry Foley? Poor kicker. Defensive liability. Ordinary distributor.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 11:30am
              Bakkies said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:30am | ! Report

              Done on the outside where Beale was supposed to be defending but couldn’t get there due to being in the midfield (where he should be defending as a 12).

              • August 21st 2017 @ 10:53pm
                Olly said | August 21st 2017 @ 10:53pm | ! Report

                It was a one on one and he got made to look the fool. Simple in and out running line did the job.

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 11:43am
              eagleJack said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:43am | ! Report

              I guess we’ll carry Foley until another option comes along.

              Seeing as only 2 of 5 Super teams had an Aussie at 10 we aren’t exactly flush with alternatives.

              QC and Foley clearly not the answers. Lance? Maybe. Would love to see him get through a season uninjured.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 11:54am
                sittingbison said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:54am | ! Report

                Three. Lance.. Force… remember them?
                Grant took over cv when he got injured (as you point out, his liability)
                Lance solid in all departments including kicking and defence. Probably won’t set house on fire like Cooper can, but won’t let you down…like Cooper can

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 12:33pm
                eagleJack said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:33pm | ! Report

                Yep mentioned Lance in my comment. The fact he got injured meant that he barely played at 10. And Grant was kept there even when he returned.

                So my point remains. We have zero depth at 10.

                Unless I’ve completely overlooked some superstar that is currently plying his trade in the NRC?!

              • August 20th 2017 @ 9:31pm
                Norm said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:31pm | ! Report

                Give Hodge a go at 10

              • August 21st 2017 @ 11:00pm
                Olly said | August 21st 2017 @ 11:00pm | ! Report

                Why not Beale to 10. He is playing the role of the 10 as it is. Beale to 10, kerevi 12 and kurin 13. Wings folou and Henry with penny at 15.

                I would love to see Beale linking from a offload from Kerevi with those guys running outside him. Kerevi can tackle just out of sort at 13.

                If they insist on Foley at 10 then Beale at 15. Hodge on the bench but pushing for a run on spot.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 12:12pm
              Jumbo said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:12pm | ! Report

              Reiko has beaten many on the outside, can’t solely blame folau and his abilities.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:20pm
                CheikMate said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:20pm | ! Report

                Hahaha! Comedy, yes?!

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:20pm
                CheikMate said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:20pm | ! Report

                Blame Cheika if anyone.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 1:41pm
                Jameswm said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:41pm | ! Report

                Folau wasn’t trusting the inside guys and got caught with his weight going in the wrong direction.

                Rookie errors.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 3:46pm
                Schuey said | August 20th 2017 @ 3:46pm | ! Report

                It was 5 defenders on 2 attackers. There wasnt even an inside attacker to occupy izzy. It was just a shocking error.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 5:15pm
                Selector said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:15pm | ! Report

                Not obsolving Folau of the blame, but would you trust your inside man with that pack?
                When you watch that many people fall off tackles, I would be second guessing every defensive play I made.
                Felt so sick watching that first half.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 6:06pm
                BrainsTrust said | August 20th 2017 @ 6:06pm | ! Report

                A prop forward would have got past Folau on that occasion. I think he just got fixated on watching the bloke with the ball and so he didn’t know where his man was when the pass was thrown.

              • August 21st 2017 @ 12:18am
                Jumbo said | August 21st 2017 @ 12:18am | ! Report

                Getting a bit far fetched now, reiko has been gassing guys all year and izzy was no different.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 4:56pm
              cuw said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:56pm | ! Report

              ” What about Folau’s defence? Got beaten on the outside like a complete rookie. ‘

              simply becoz he turned the wrong shoulder – probably becoz the inside defender was mising or did not trust him 🙂

              what else u expect when people are running around just to get to their position??

              i think at half time they were showing the problems Kerevi had just to get to his position ….. DUH

        • August 20th 2017 @ 11:35pm
          canadiankiwi said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:35pm | ! Report

          If your 10 and 15 cannot kick to test rugby standards, select a 10 and 15 who can kick.

          These positions require strong boots, especially at Test level.

          Selecting a wing who can kick so your 10 does not have to is as problematic as selecting a wing who can tackle in the 12 channel so your 12 can dropback out of the defensive line.

          Create a template of what skill set you want and need at each position and then only select players who match the template.

          • Roar Guru

            August 21st 2017 @ 6:44am
            taylorman said | August 21st 2017 @ 6:44am | ! Report

            Think youre preaching to the converted on that one but the prob is oz doesnt have enough talent to fit that level of profile for each position.

            By the time youre left with players that meet every requirement for the position theyre probably either 12 or female so you need to accept there need to be compromises.

            For me, defensive heart and skilld appear to be that compromise

            • August 21st 2017 @ 11:06pm
              Olly said | August 21st 2017 @ 11:06pm | ! Report

              Beale, Hodge, Penny seem to have the kicking game and all round skills to do the job. Any NZ team would pick them if selecting an Oz team. Oz rugby is stuck thinking about the 1% of brilliance not the 80 minutes of getting the job done.

      • August 20th 2017 @ 12:17pm
        CheikMate said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:17pm | ! Report

        Don’t just habitually blame Nick Phipps for everything! He wasn’t even on the field for the carnage!! When Genia was hooked off and Phipps did come on, we scored four converted and unanswered tries.. And conceded not one point for God’s sake!

        • August 20th 2017 @ 12:39pm
          Buk said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:39pm | ! Report

          Yeah – among the positives, I thought Phipps played reasonably well – his passes were fine. Only blemish was when he annoyed Barnes, but that did not cost us anything, other than a telling off.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 1:44pm
            Jameswm said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:44pm | ! Report

            He threw 1 or 2 poor passes. But it was no coincidence that we got on top when TPN, Timsni, Hodge, Kuridrani, Phipps, Crockett and Romano came on.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 8:09pm
              Mike said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:09pm | ! Report

              So it wasn’t that NZ took their foot off the accelerator, it was because our reserves came on?

        • August 20th 2017 @ 1:59pm
          Ruka said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:59pm | ! Report

          When Phipps came on the All Blacks had switched off, it’s hardly a fair comparison.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 2:57pm
            Phantom said | August 20th 2017 @ 2:57pm | ! Report

            It just shows difference between the sides “impact” bench players. Stop kidding yourself about this ‘switching off” bs. Knowing the Abs mentality they would love to demolish the “big brother” during the second half …..they call it the small p mentality.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 3:47pm
              Schuey said | August 20th 2017 @ 3:47pm | ! Report

              Henry said the ABs switched off. Everyone says it. Except you.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 4:05pm
                begbie said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:05pm | ! Report

                Henry, you mean Hansen right! ABs did well considering the Kaino & A Smith sideshows

              • August 20th 2017 @ 4:58pm
                cuw said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:58pm | ! Report

                who can blame them – 54 points in like 48 minutes is the kind of score they got against Japan 😛

              • August 20th 2017 @ 5:16pm
                Phantom said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:16pm | ! Report

                What else did Henry says about his “impact” bench players ?

              • August 20th 2017 @ 7:23pm
                Jacko said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:23pm | ! Report

                He said all his players have Big P mentality

              • August 20th 2017 @ 8:33pm
                Phantom said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:33pm | ! Report

                Graham Henry???

            • August 20th 2017 @ 9:14pm
              Isupport2teamstheAB'sandanyoneplayingAustralia said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:14pm | ! Report

              Big brother …? Lol more and more it’s becoming little sister

              • August 21st 2017 @ 4:47am
                Tommy said | August 21st 2017 @ 4:47am | ! Report

                ?? little sister don’t be smart BAHHAAHA

        • August 20th 2017 @ 6:30pm
          Dan in Devon said | August 20th 2017 @ 6:30pm | ! Report

          Phipps is emblematic of the problems with the Wallabies. A scrum half who can’t pass or kick – no wonder Lynagh blew his top!

          • August 20th 2017 @ 8:10pm
            Mike said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:10pm | ! Report

            Yes, as demonstrated by the way NZ scored all their tries against us when he came on…

            • August 20th 2017 @ 8:39pm
              Dan in Devon said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:39pm | ! Report

              Mate, the match was over when he came on. And still he managed his mandatory over–the-next-guy’s-head pass. Cheika has an opportunity to build for the future now and in that respect Joe Powell should be Genia’s understudy.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 9:04pm
                Mike said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:04pm | ! Report

                Not really.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 9:05pm
                Mike said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:05pm | ! Report

                The match was not over, don’t kid yourself. The ABs do not switch off.

                There is no point getting obsessed over selections – they aren’t going to make much difference with Australian rugby in its current state.

              • August 21st 2017 @ 10:35am
                Bakkies said | August 21st 2017 @ 10:35am | ! Report

                The match was over after they scored those two soft tries in the space of 8 mins after half time.

          • August 21st 2017 @ 10:10pm
            PiratesRugby said | August 21st 2017 @ 10:10pm | ! Report

            Phipps can tackle, run, chase and back up as well as anyone in the team. It wasn’t always so but he worked on it tirelessly. It’s just that he’s never been a good passer or kicker.

        • August 21st 2017 @ 4:30pm
          Lesley Kelly said | August 21st 2017 @ 4:30pm | ! Report

          Yes but the AB’s had stopped playing.

        • August 22nd 2017 @ 1:54pm
          Link said | August 22nd 2017 @ 1:54pm | ! Report

          54/6 10 minutes into in the second half.The ABS relaaaaaxed.

      • August 20th 2017 @ 4:59pm
        Bring Back...? said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:59pm | ! Report

        Dan, that’s just not true. The first try came after Foley found touch from our 22 and the ABs threw in quickly from their own 10m line…Rona than missed a one-on-one tackle….it flowed from there. Unless you’re critical of Foley for not finding the crowd, then it’s just a targeted attack on Foley. In no way am I suggesting Foley had a great game, but let’s keep to the facts. I just watched that play and it’s clear.

        The back line defence was atrocious in design and implementation.

        • August 20th 2017 @ 8:12pm
          Dan in Devon said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:12pm | ! Report

          Surely when kicking to touch in your own half you would be expected to put the ball into the crowd? Think! The wallabies were out of position and Foley has just given the ABs an opportunity to counter attack. The ball should have been 10 rows back in the crowd. Foley’s exit kicking problems have been well documented but it you want to revisit the shambolic kicking of the England tests look at the link below.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 9:40pm
            Norm said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:40pm | ! Report

            They should give Hodge a go at 10.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 10:35pm
            Bring Back...? said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:35pm | ! Report

            Yeah thanks Dan, I’ll be sure to remember to think.

            There’s a lot to criticise Foley for, no doubt, but that is nitpicking, that’s all. You attribute the ABs first try to him when the play started on their side of half way and others miss first up, one-on-one tackles, whilst others have no idea to slide in defence.

      • August 22nd 2017 @ 4:12pm
        Dave Knox said | August 22nd 2017 @ 4:12pm | ! Report

        The stink in Australian rugby should be fixed at the board room first and foremost with their out of date repugnant we own it attitude. How dare you claim ownership to a game that should be freely open for all people to play access Australia. The rot will continue until this is fixed for good. I can’t believe John Eales has sat on a board with members with no clues, and definitely no vision or ability. Let Andrew Forrest take over please.

    • Roar Guru

      August 20th 2017 @ 6:44am
      Oliver Matthews said | August 20th 2017 @ 6:44am | ! Report

      So what’s the fix do you reckon Jack?

      This week’s performance is not exactly an anomaly is it? The past two years have demonstrated that Aussie rugby has serious issues that go to all aspects of the game – coaching and playing from lower grades all the way to the very top just seems to be lacking. There are a huge number of passionate people who are giving so much to the game they love but in key points there is a worrying lack of talent in both coaches and the players they are meant to be developing.

      Today’s plan was shocking and the execution on the field of even the most basic elements of that plan was horrendous. Can the Wallabies change both strategy and performance in just a week?

      • August 20th 2017 @ 7:25pm
        Breno said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:25pm | ! Report

        It won’t be fixed, it CAN’T be fixed the way things are. I could write a thesis on this topic, but I’ll try and keep it at a readable length.

        ARU’s issues lie all the way back at grassroots, and I’m not sure if they don’t care enough to fix it or they are too ignorant (or elitist) to realise that a problem even exists. I’ve mentioned this in a previous post, but AFL are beginning to dominate rugby heartlands (that goes for both RU and RL) at the grassroots level. They have a very well organised junior program that appeals to both the kids and the parents. My 7-year-old plays both RU and AFL, and I can tell you the difference is substantial. To give an example – last week the Gold Coast Suns put on a movie evening for the kids and EVERY member of the team turned up. All of them. They played with the kids in the cinema foyer for an entire hour before the movie started. And that wasn’t an isolated incident. In comparison, The ‘Rookies 2 Reds’ program has given the same hat and shirt to the kids for 4 seasons running – I guess it makes economic sense, they clearly had left-overs. As superficial and materialistic as this may seem, it carries with it the impression that they couldn’t be bothered making an effort. In the meantime, the GC Suns are taking the kids to Time Zone every few weeks and the team members turn up to their training.

        Another issue that is working in AFL’s favour is the fact that parent’s don’t want their 12-year-old being snapped in half by a 95kg early maturer. This issue has long been addressed in NZ with weight divisions. Whether you feel the answer is better tackling technique or that weight divisions will create soft players, you can’t ignore the fact that parents are preferencing AFL over RU for this reason. Not all small kids become small adults – I wonder how many superstars are we losing.

        Finally, RU needs to connect with the working class – it’s why RL has such depth. Some free-to-air games might be a good start.

    • August 20th 2017 @ 6:59am
      Fionn said | August 20th 2017 @ 6:59am | ! Report

      But they aren’t the best 15 rugby players in Australia, are they, Jack?

      • August 20th 2017 @ 9:44am
        Dave_S said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:44am | ! Report

        Regardless, Fionn, we should have 50 players who can at least defend.

        • August 20th 2017 @ 11:21am
          PiratesRugby said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:21am | ! Report

          At RWC15 the Wallabies defended like champions against Wales. But after 2 years of Cheika we miss more than we make.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 12:34pm
            StuM said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:34pm | ! Report

            That is EXACTLY the problem. Cheika was fortunate to inherit a reasonably sound/rugby-rounded team for the WC2015 who did well despite Cheika’s early futilities, and his dictatorship of Cheikaball plans to all since then, the ARU included, are completely now coming to bare. Single-handedly destroying what was good, with delusional plans and views absolutely nobody else shares. What a furore he’s causing.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 8:14pm
              Mike said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:14pm | ! Report

              Yeah put all the blame on the coach. That’s a recipe that’s worked since Knuckles.

              And be honest about it, you are assuming that if the “right” coach is found Australia will be number 1.

              Or the “right” fly half.

              Or the “right” openside.

              Its better than admitting australian rugby has deeply ingrained problems.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 8:26pm
                Fionn said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:26pm | ! Report

                To be fair Knuckles is remembered poorly for one bad loss, and a match we would have won if Mortlock had kicked the very makable penalty. Who knows how differently 07 could have turned out if Mortlock had kicked that goal (and assuming England didn’t score again in the last 2 mins).

                Deans was really popular until the 2011 RWC: ‘You Either Die A Hero, Or You Live Long Enough To See Yourself Become The Villain’ applies well to him.

                McKenzie was actually pretty popular in Australia, and people felt that we were improving under him. It is very unfortunate how things turned out with him.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 9:13pm
                Mike said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:13pm | ! Report

                Sure, everything goes in cycles.

                But I was referring to a widespread habit of assuming that changing the coach/team members for the “right” coach/team members (or less Tahs, or less Reds etc) will see Australia at number 1. Its been pretty common at least since Knuckles’ time, even if muted at times.

                And its a very good excuse for avoiding significant reform of Australian rugby. Too many people protecting their patch – much easier to sit in armchairs and propose a different mix of players/coaches etc.

                Knuckles commented about problems that go deeper with Australian rugby, so did Deans, maybe others. Each year we drop that little bit further behind the top tier teams. We still are in the top tier, maybe, but only just.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 5:00pm
            cuw said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:00pm | ! Report

            nah – it was more a case of Wales not knowing what to do in attack , which is the case to this day.

            the only similarity between the two teams in 2015 was :

            auzzy said , just give it to Folau ; welsh said , just give it to Roberts. 🙂

          • August 21st 2017 @ 7:24pm
            Woeful Waratah Grey said | August 21st 2017 @ 7:24pm | ! Report

            That’s what happens when you give an old Waratah mate the defensive gig.

            He failed at Super Rugby level so what made Cheika think he’ll succeed at Test?

            Waratah conspiracy continues

        • August 20th 2017 @ 12:10pm
          Bakkies said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:10pm | ! Report

          Pirates Rugby 2015 is now irrelevant. Key players in that defensive set up AAC and Giteau have finished their test careers. Mitchell wasn’t a bad defender either.

          Than you had Toomua off the bench he is also gone for a while at least.

          When you have these blokes in the side players are defending in their selected positions.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 5:04pm
            cuw said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:04pm | ! Report

            the selection of Rona was very interesting.

            since i had no idea who he is , looked up the fox sports super rugger stats.

            he had played over 1000 minutes for just one try.

            he had made like 90 tackles and missed like 30.

            hardly inspirational figures to play against the best team in the world .

          • August 21st 2017 @ 10:17am
            Bakkies said | August 21st 2017 @ 10:17am | ! Report

            Played majority of the season at centre and was picked on the wing while shuffling in and out of position.

            Putting players like Little, Rathbone and Mortlock on the wing worked back in the day but now. Not just being better Rugby players that had blokes inside them that tackle, the ABs didn’t have has good as passing game with than they do now. Blokes at 9 like Marshall and Kelliher didn’t put as much as pace and tempo as the current scrumhalfs do.

    • August 20th 2017 @ 7:02am
      PiratesRugby said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:02am | ! Report

      This is what many of us have been saying since Cheika took over. Or in other words, I told you so.
      I feel sorry for this generation of players who have played under a foolish game plan and nonexistent defensive structure. Their spirits are broken. Look at how many players have left. How can any player have faith in Cheika’s selections? The impact of Cheik’s reign has spread right through Australian rugby.

      • August 20th 2017 @ 3:49pm
        Schuey said | August 20th 2017 @ 3:49pm | ! Report

        Its the other way round. Cheika has been given lower quality players

        • August 20th 2017 @ 5:02pm
          Fionn said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:02pm | ! Report

          Lower quality players than Link had? Oh, yeah, like Coleman and Arnold instead of Simmons and injured Horwill, Sio and Ala’alatoa rather than younger Sio and Robinson. Pocock rather than not having Pocock available.

          Most of the quality players that Link had and Cheika does not are only unavailable because Cheika drove them by not selecting them.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 6:48pm
            Gepetto said | August 20th 2017 @ 6:48pm | ! Report

            The Wallabies started winning when Simmo came on.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 9:17pm
              Isupport2teamstheAB'sandanyoneplayingAustralia said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:17pm | ! Report

              Started winning? When were the Wobblies in the lead? I never seen the Wobblies winning at any point of the game. Oh you mean 3-0? No that’s not what you mean, wow Wobbly rugby so low that you can see things that way…

        • August 20th 2017 @ 7:25pm
          iSteves said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:25pm | ! Report

          Nah, Cheika’s selection, defence and game plan are confusing and magnify each other.

    • August 20th 2017 @ 7:06am
      mzilikazi said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:06am | ! Report

      ” This is a bad rugby team. And the All Blacks are a good rugby team.”

      Thanks for the Article….lot of very valid points made. Bu, I am going to argue with you here, Jack.

      I cannot agree that a bad rugby team would have put in a performance that saw them hold the All Blacks to a 20 point winning margin only. The All Blacks last night were not a good rugby team. They were a great rugby team, that played sublime rugby in the first half, and executed a series of superb tries.

      These were men playing at the absolute top of their abilities. Give them full credit, rather than look only at the perceived failings of their opponents.

      And I also believe that a bad team, at 54 – 6 down would have folded, and conceded 100 plus points with still some 25 mins of the game to go.

      I support the Wallabies, and always will. I am a proud Australian and Queenslander now. though born in Ireland. I did not enjoy watching 54 points being “put” on my team.

      But I did enjoy watching a game in which exhilarating and superb rugby was played…at times by the Wallabies as well.

      I do agree tat we are going through a really horrible…indeed disgraceful period in the history of Australian rugby. But IMO the Wallabies last night did actually give some relief to a very beleagured riugby nation.

      • August 20th 2017 @ 9:14am
        Neil Back said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:14am | ! Report

        I’m not sure I’d describe that as ‘superb rugby’ last night. With Australia missing 30 tackles and the AB’s weighing in with 23 of their own by the end, it had the feeling of watching ‘touch rugby’ at times. Very strange test match.

        • August 20th 2017 @ 9:41am
          Connor33 said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:41am | ! Report

          To put bluntly: it was sh$& rugby by both side, save for about 25 minutes from both. Basketball was more attractive than the crap that was served up last night.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 10:35am
            Ouch said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:35am | ! Report

            The Basketball was attractive last night. We also flogged the Tall Blacks by 40 points.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 12:05pm
              Connor33 said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:05pm | ! Report


            • August 20th 2017 @ 2:03pm
              Ruka said | August 20th 2017 @ 2:03pm | ! Report

              You do realise that all of New Zealand’s senior players were rested for that tournament right?
              It was a development team that was sent to the Asia cup, must feel really good beaten a C team.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 2:16pm
                BenG said | August 20th 2017 @ 2:16pm | ! Report

                But there were none of the Boomers’ NBA players either, so effectively our own 2nd or 3rd team as well..

      • August 20th 2017 @ 2:02pm
        Ruka said | August 20th 2017 @ 2:02pm | ! Report

        You are living in a fantasy land if you think the Wallabies are in reality a 20pt team or less to the All Blacks. The All Blacks turned the lights out after halftime the game was well and truly in the bag and even a blind an could see that they weren’t playing anywhere near the level they had played in the first 40.

        The scoreline flattered the Australians.

        • August 20th 2017 @ 5:20pm
          Shelby said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:20pm | ! Report

          Spot on, it was the worst defensive effort I have ever seen by an Australian league or union team. They continually failed to make the first tackle.

      • August 20th 2017 @ 9:55pm
        Drongo said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:55pm | ! Report

        The game goes for 80 minutes and both teams should be assessed on their 80 minute performance. Many of the comments on here are quite hysterical.
        Get a grip, take your meds, this is a game of rugby, not anything important. Many of you sound very ugly and unhappy.

        • August 22nd 2017 @ 7:49am
          Breno said | August 22nd 2017 @ 7:49am | ! Report

          “Bait! We have bait here! 3 for a dollar!… Anyone? Takers? Great deal! Anyone?”

    • August 20th 2017 @ 7:09am
      Beelzebub said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:09am | ! Report

      You’re right the second half tries were down to the AB’s losing any interest in the game by then, luckily that was the case!! Or the score was heading into telephone number territory this wallabies situation is bad for all Southern Hemisphere rugby and you guys are doing us no favours. Signed Akiwi

      • August 20th 2017 @ 7:23am
        mzilikazi said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:23am | ! Report

        “second half tries were down to the AB’s losing any interest in the game by then,” Are you sure about that, BZB. Ask the All Blacks if they had lost interest…..I don’t that is in their DNA at all…those guys don’t enjoy conceding a single point, any where, ever, in any game.

        • Roar Guru

          August 20th 2017 @ 7:53am
          stillmissit said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:53am | ! Report

          MZ I was disappoointed that the AB’s did not stick 100 into us. I thoght we deserved it last night. Jack mentioned the D which was a gutless display BUT the breakdown was so bad that it would have made a womans powder puff look tough. I waited and waited for the forwards to attack the AB’s ball – – – Nothing.

          Better BD in the second half but still no convinced that Beale can tackle.
          The worst Wallaby game in my watching history over 40 years….

          Hoopers BS end of game talk shows why he should not be captain.

          The only first half Warriors:
          Genia – how slow is he now?

          I would sack the coach, the senior players (which must be where the rot starts from) and START AGAIN

          • August 20th 2017 @ 8:14am
            Fionn said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:14am | ! Report

            Foley? Good grief, once again immune from criticism.

            Otherwise, you’re on the money.

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 8:21am
              stillmissit said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:21am | ! Report

              Fionn I should have put some justification on that as I noted at a couple of points he was the only one tackling and sticking. Regarding his general game totally agree. 3 steps to nowhere in that clearing kick which should have been a try to the AB’s.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 8:50am
                Fionn said | August 20th 2017 @ 8:50am | ! Report

                Ugh, he had so much space to make that kick. He’s deceptively quick though, Foley.

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 11:22am
              PeterK said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:22am | ! Report

              speight missed far too many tackles again, also poor reads , he comes in too much, a very poor combo kerevi and speight

              • August 20th 2017 @ 11:33am
                Bakkies said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:33am | ! Report

                He comes in because he has to.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 11:52am
                Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:52am | ! Report

                Yes good call Peterk – Kerevi’s defence got badly exposed – he won’t even make the bench next game one suspects.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 11:52am
                Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:52am | ! Report

                Yes good call Peterk – Kerevi’s defence got badly exposed – he won’t even make the bench next game one suspects.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 12:10pm
                Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:10pm | ! Report

                Don’t no why it does that two posts thing on this site sometimes but anyway

          • August 20th 2017 @ 9:00am
            Harry said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:00am | ! Report

            Folau? Appalling defence. Watch his genuinely pathetic attempt on Ioane for the first try. Deserves as much condemnation as Kerevi, who at least tried. Floau and Beale literally hid out on the wings and then were hopeless when faced with making tackles.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 9:21am
              Lano said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:21am | ! Report

              Agre Folau is the most overrated played in world rugby.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 9:31am
              Gurudoright said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:31am | ! Report

              Folau needs new tricks, everybody has picked up on the fact that he refuses to pass the ball. The only time I saw him pass all game last night was a last second effort to Hooper who dropped it as he was committing himself to the about to form ruck and Ioane picked it up and raced in for a try. He is a selfish player, although brilliant still very selfish

              • August 20th 2017 @ 9:56am
                Scott said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:56am | ! Report

                Folau can’t pass which is why he doesn’t. Beale is a classic example of the problem, good in attack but the concept of moving him to the wing in defence both sends the wrong message and reduces the chance of having a good defensive structure. Lucky we have that excellent defender Quade to replace him

              • August 20th 2017 @ 10:58am
                Morsie said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:58am | ! Report

                Didn’t he pop the ball beautifully to Kurindrani for his try? How about his great run at the end of the game that got us out of the danger zone?

                The BIGGEST issue by far is our light weight popgun and inexperienced back row. That’s a friggin joke, and Cheika former 8 himself. The Kiwi back row completely dominated the tackle stats.

                A selection committee is what is required. Bob Dwyer picked Coleman 5 years ago.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 1:47pm
                Jameswm said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:47pm | ! Report

                Our back row was invisible for most of the game. Hanigan was invisible even when we were scoring points

              • August 20th 2017 @ 5:18pm
                Cambo said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:18pm | ! Report

                I’m glad someone mentioned this Morsie. With the exception of that poor defensive read on Ioane he was exceptional. He more than made up for it with his offload to Kuridrani for a try and a try of his own.

                Where were his support runners for that brilliant break he had? SBW did something similar and he had support runners everywhere. Folau is one of the highlights in australian rugby at the moment, its staggering that people think he is the issue right now.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 11:23am
                PeterK said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:23am | ! Report

                you do realise Folau passed 8 times in that game

                including a very good try assist to kuridrani

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 11:26am
              PeterK said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:26am | ! Report

              1 poor tackle compared to the dross by others in the backline, he made 4 tackles, missed 1

              Rona, Beale, Kerevi, Speight were all worse in defence in that game.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:02pm
                sittingbison said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:02pm | ! Report

                Rona and Speight had to run around like headless chooks covering for Beale and Kerevi

                Don’t forget Beale Kerevi and Rona were all playing out of their usual position

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:08pm
                Connor33 said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:08pm | ! Report

                PK – I’m with you on the whole, but the way Folau let in that try was pretty ordinary. The thing is: it motivated him to make up for it with the pass and runs that he made.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 12:09pm
                Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:09pm | ! Report

                Yes good call Peterk – Kerevi’s defence got badly exposed – he won’t even make the bench next game one suspects.

                Rona can perhaps be forgiven a little as he is still adjusting to the 15 man game

                The official stats show Speight missed 5 – Kerevi 4- Beale 3 -Rona 5 and Folau as missing none at all – so you have point Peterk except perhaps….

                …..that these stats don’t show players missing players altogether because of poor positional play or coming out of the line too early and thus don’t even get near the attacking player so it is not registered as a missed tackle

                Folau is often guilty of this as you would well know and that is exactly what happened with Ioanes try when he completely skinned Folau on the outside. Izzy came forward out of the line when he should have gone sideways to shut down Ioane’s space and they may have pushed him out before he scored.

                Poor read from Folau which he has a habit of doing and it was costly in this instance.

                But I agree completely with you that he was not as bad as the others in this test – but like I say – some poor defensive plays are not registered as missed tackles because defenders don’t get near the player due to their error of judgement – and this is often far worse than a missed tackle as it can open up gaps or leave more space – Ioane’s try is a case in point, but never registered as a missed tackle by Folau.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 12:56pm
                stillmissit said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:56pm | ! Report

                Fox: What the hell was Rona doing there if he is just learning the game? Cheika thought he would pull another feather out of his A but it didn’t work with Rona. He looked like he wanted to go back to league where life is simpler…

                I accept that Speights tackling wasn’t a lot better but by god he put in moreguts and effort than all the other backs in the first half. You have to admire a guy who stands up when all the rest are sitting down….

              • Roar Rookie

                August 21st 2017 @ 11:25am
                piru said | August 21st 2017 @ 11:25am | ! Report

                Rona is not “learning” the game, he was a rugby player long before he was seduced by the dark side.

                I think he was simply thrown in at a new position against the All Blacks and expected to sink or swim – a disorganised team being thumped is not the ideal place for the new bloke to try and find his rhythm.

          • Roar Pro

            August 20th 2017 @ 10:22am
            Anthony said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:22am | ! Report

            Why sack the coach? He inherited 5 super rugby teams with zero wins over NZ teams this year. Plus who would replace him?

            A lot of things are going wrong with rugby in Australia, but sorry placing the blame at the feet of Chieka is premature. It was only 2 years ago that he took us back to a World Cup Final. I’d give him a clear run until the next World Cup.

            The fact is All Blacks were coming in hot off the Super Rugby Finals. Wallabies have had no opposition. When they did hit gear at the 50min mark, it gave us some hope.

            Personally if there was a failure it was a lack of a pre-All Black test. Problem is next test is Dunedin in NZ. A tall ask.

            • Columnist

              August 20th 2017 @ 11:15am
              Jack Quigley said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:15am | ! Report

              This is probably the most logical stance to take. You can have the best coach in the world, and we do have one of them, but at the end of the day when the game kicks off if his players can’t tackle you won’t win. Ever.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:11pm
                sittingbison said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:11pm | ! Report

                Don’t cave in now. It was a shambles BEFORE the first whistle. Selections and Grey’s defence were the problem, everything else flowed from these.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:13pm
                Houston said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:13pm | ! Report

                Not sure about that Jack, the coach needs to take responsibility, Cheika and Grey need to draft a winning game plan and the players need to implement it. Take a look at Jake White when he was in Canberra, he took a decent rugby team and made them a good rugby team, and their defense was outstanding. As an example, I reckon if White took this Wallaby team now he would almost certainly improve their defense – this tells me a coach does have a lot to do with how a team plays, it is not just what the players do on the night.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:51pm
                soapit said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:51pm | ! Report

                its cheikas (and greys) responsibility to ensure they do tackle (to a reasonable standard)

                to say we cant find 15 guys across the poor super teams that can do this is pretty poor excuse making. using poor super teams as an excuse for not winning maybe. not an excuse for that 1st half in any strectch, thats poor coaching.

                and thats before we even have the discussion over whether rugby standards come form the top down in any way.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 12:55pm
                Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:55pm | ! Report

                And who is the one behind the decisions to coach them to tackle and defend Jack in the last how many years? – Santa Claus?

                I take it by one of the best coaches in the world you meant Mick Byrne surely?

                Because Cheika now has one of the worst records home and away of any Wallaby coach in recent history so it is an oxymoron to then claim him as one of the best coaches in the world right now – he is long way from that at this point in his career.

                He rehired Nathan Grey after the Wallabies poor defensive record post 2015 WC and his diabolical defensive play for the Tahs this season.

                Do you think Hansen or Eddie Jones or Joe Schmidt or even Robbie Deans would have done the same?

                Not the smartest move in Wallaby head coach history to hire a defensive coach with Greys recent record and look at what just happened – the most leaked points in the first half ever between the two sides.

                Poor decision making with selections, tactics, and staff have plagued Cheika’s recent coaching record. Sooner or later Jack, the buck must stop and indeed, end with Cheika

                We are way past that point now and some.

              • August 21st 2017 @ 7:35pm
                Beautifully said! said | August 21st 2017 @ 7:35pm | ! Report


                Do you see Hanson reward the Auckland Blues defensive coach? Nope

                Do you see Hanson selecting rookie players out of position? Nope

                Do you see Hanson starting half a Super Rugby team of underperforming players? Nope

                Do you see Hanson reward players after a horrendous game, or even players looking lost, or with a lack of interest at the best of times?

                Do you see….ah, I could go on but you get the point.

                Well said!

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 1:06pm
                stillmissit said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:06pm | ! Report

                I could accept that Jack if he had done his job and he didn’t. Kerevi should have been pulled after 25mins, The tactics were crap, no idea what the plan was. The players were not in a head space to play at this level, I got the feeling they hoped the sexedents would put them off. The attack was all one off, there was not a break created that I remember from the first half, THE BD was appauling and was one of the most gutless displays I have seen in years.

                My gut feel is that Cheika could not organise a chook raffle. He must be sacked as the coach is always responsible.

                I think Mick Burn could at least organise the joint and after a scorched earth period build a foundation of players who want to play for Australia…

                A mate of mine watched Warringah v Manly yesterday, reckons the Rats would have done a better job than the Wallabies last night,

            • August 20th 2017 @ 11:25am
              Geoffwho said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:25am | ! Report

              The game has continued to evolve since RWC 2015, yet we are still playing the same tactics. The results have only been getting worse and there is never a plan b. Failure is always slated to fitness, commitment or belief. It is the coaching staff that is the problem.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 11:54am
              Red Block said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:54am | ! Report

              But we did have one best coaches in the world. A coach who’d been assistant to a RW cup final and led different teams to three SR finals for one win.
              He was installing discipline and the team was on the up with pretty much the same players as today.
              But the some of the players didn’t like being held accountable for their actions and chose to put him in an untenable situation.
              Now that those players are firmly entrenched in the squad, the small cancer that was being removed has been left to grow and developed into a major tumour.
              The demise of Australian rugby is imminent unless major surgery takes place.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 4:12pm
                Hurles said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:12pm | ! Report

                You hit the nail on the head here mate. I said it at the time of this disgraceful sequence of events and unfortunately i was right. Sad thing is our current captain was at the heart of it. They made their little boys club within the wallabies at the expense of team culture, respect and discipline. And look where we are now.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 7:08pm
                Stephen C said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:08pm | ! Report

                I couldn’t agree more. What we are missing is the Link.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 12:09pm
              sittingbison said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:09pm | ! Report

              Because he is the sole selector and tactician. He appointed Grey, and selected Hannigan et al. Despite the Tahs getting thrashed by record scores….what was it five 40point against in a row? Including getting a shellacking from the Force. And In almost every game the Tahs got flogged in the first half.
              The article starts off saying they played Grey’s Tah defence. Guess what happened. .

            • August 20th 2017 @ 12:54pm
              taylorman said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:54pm | ! Report

              I agree, but he does need to widen the scope of his role next year and look at managing the Super squad managers, look at recruiting drives at lower levels.

              He’s responsible for what’s happening at the top, so he needs to know what’s happening before they get there.

              If you replace, you do it because there’s someone better, not because a scalp makes everyone feel better. There isn’t. So work with what you have, and base it on revised and realistic goals.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 4:53pm
                FunBus said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:53pm | ! Report

                In general I would agree, Tman that a knee jerk ‘sack the buggers’ is rarely a well-thought out approach. But, sometimes things get so bad that a stand needs to be made regarding basic standards below which there must be consequences.
                I was watching the match in the UK with the Aussie commentary feed and analysis in the UK from Fitzpatrick and Lynagh. I have never seen Lynagh so angry. He’s one of the game’s gentlemen but looked fit to be tied.
                Kearns (or it might have been Kafer) casually announces before the game in commentary that Coleman and Arnold are soon to be the best locking pair in the world and we then have 40 minutes of rugby that should be a national disgrace. The ABs simply got bored in the 2nd half. While I think there may be a growing issue about the quality of the AB tight five replacements off the bench, the Aussie ‘comeback’ was simply due to the ABs being already on the plane. There comes a point where that simply can’t be allowed to continue almost regardless of who is available to come in.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 5:16pm
                cuw said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:16pm | ! Report

                @ taylorman

                too true.

                what i would do is first decide on the coaching teams of the four super teams. so far it looks as if the quality of coaches is quite low , including some of the foreigners and even the locals.

                then i would get involved in the selection of four squads – say of 40 each. if given the chance i will send foreigners back to their countries.

                am sure guys like Tui and Mafi and Cubeli et al can play for their own teams. so dont feel sad for them.

                next i will look at the players and get them playing in positions where i want them to play. for eg. everyone say Timani shud play 8 for OZ but he rarely if ever plays at 8 in super rugger.

                of course longterm strategy shud be to look at the schools structure and skill development.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 7:42pm
                taylorman said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:42pm | ! Report

                Yes with the conference style comp the Super sides should be working together more. Ideally I’d see a full get together of all players, or as many as possible and lay out clearly what the selectors will be looking for in the style and key indicators for each position, break out into groups and get buy in from all the players as potential test candidates.

                Sure there’s the derby matches where they’re at each other full out but there’s also the cross conference matches and the test programme. The four squads can push each other to better outcomes and in some cases more closely aligned standards, while accommodating the uniqueness of their own ‘brand’…for want of a better word.

                That way the best team gets pushed into the Wallaby team rather than selected, the weekly competition between all positions resulting in pushing the best players forward.

                And be transparent, let the squads know who’s performing, who’s not, who needs to improve and where etc. If squads are all focussing on lifting their players to the next level that’s gotta be good for the teams results, and the general lifting of player standards.

                This secular ‘we’re out to show everyone else ‘ thinking doesn’t help anyone these days. It should be every Super players responsibility and goal at the beginning of the season to first make the Wallaby side by being the best Super rugby player for the position and secondly, beat the ABs by years end. (At least that goal applies at the moment)…as the numbers are minimal so they need to get the best out of them.

        • Roar Guru

          August 20th 2017 @ 9:17am
          Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:17am | ! Report

          No mzilikazi Kerin Read said post match – and doesn’t normally say this kind of of stuff – but said they let their foot off the pedal in second half because everything was coming just too easy and they will look at that for next week

          It was pretty obvious as well – they started throwing silly passes when they normally wouldn’t and playing like it was game of touch footy because the Wallaby defence was just terrible . McKenzie’s silly throw pass backwards too no one that resulted in a Beale try was an example of this. He wasn’t doing that in the first half at all.

          So I would be careful about reading too much into the Wallaby by comeback – the game was over in 28 minutes.

          Nathan Grey should be sacked and Cheika not far behind and Kerevi’s defence was just simply woeful – It has always been a huge issue in his game and he was horribly exposed last night. Kerevi fans must now think again.

          Right now he has shown he is not a test level centre, inside or out, because he has no idea how to defend against sides like the AB’s with the speed they play at, and AB’s knew that and exposed him badly. They attacked he and Beales channel. But he wasn’t alone – Folau was poor in defence as well but Kerevi’s utter lack of defensive nous was the big problem – or is it Nathan Grey’s system or both?

          And though Beale very played well, especially in the second half, he still missed tackles he should have made at this level.

          It is high time Folau played on the wing.

          Liam Squire was my man-of-match – simply phenomenal game from the new starting AB no6 – made his opposite number look ordinary – I mean what did the Wallaby no6 actually do all game? He was a passenger for most of it and clearly out of his depth.

          Timani must start somewhere in the backrow. He had impact when he came on but should have started.

          Coleman had another pretty good game but Rory Arnold was a bit disappointing as Retallick and Whitelock showed why they are world’s premier locking combination. But the Wallaby pair has plenty of potential nonetheless.

          Steven Moore was pretty average last night and perhaps his time is nearer than he thinks.

          And where was Hooper’s Captaincy in the first half as the AB’s were running tries like it was a training run?

          Was it just me or did he fail to lift his players and get them better organised because it sure as hell looked didn’t look like he knew what to do?

          In the end, the scoreline sadly, flattered the Wallabies. Next week in NZ will be interesting…If the AB’s rack up the points again – where to for Cheika and Grey – the former totally defending the latter in the post match press meeting?

          Should Grey be immediately sacked if that happens in Dunedin?

          • August 20th 2017 @ 9:34am
            Jameswm said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:34am | ! Report

            I saw Beale make a few telling tackles in a row at some point.

            He is not the problem. He’s one of the few who is as good a footballer as the best ABs.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 10:00am
              Council said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:00am | ! Report

              I saw Beale make one or two good tackles, but I also saw him literally stand back and let Sonny run past him.

              He has talent, and skill, but wouldn’t make the ABs at all due to his work ethic and attitude.

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 10:24am
              Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:24am | ! Report

              As I said Jamesem he had very good game, especially in the second half, but Crotty and SBW made plenty of yards going through the centre as well as three tries between them.

              But Beale was the Wallabies best player by the end of the game.

              I said pre-game in an article that the Wallaby defence in the centres and at the back with would be a problem the the AB’s would attack and unfortunately was proved right.

              Disappointing as I honestly thought the Wallabies would have learned some lessons in the June window and would have been more competitive.

              I for really sad for the Australian fans who had forked out their money, stayed loyal in the all the recent mess , only to watch it be over well before the end of the fist half. It was a shameful coaching display from Cheika and Grey and they, and certain players, all should be held accountable.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 11:06am
                Jock Cornet said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:06am | ! Report

                I felt sorry for Kerevi, with Beale beside ya. Hodge has to play 12 and you can hide Beale on the wing

              • August 20th 2017 @ 1:53pm
                Jameswm said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:53pm | ! Report

                Why do people think Hodge is a good defender? He’s so so.

                And a poor distributor for a 12.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 3:52pm
                Schuey said | August 20th 2017 @ 3:52pm | ! Report

                Yep. Hodge is an average defender. I have seen him at the rebels. Not bad. Just average.

          • Roar Guru

            August 20th 2017 @ 9:47am
            stillmissit said | August 20th 2017 @ 9:47am | ! Report

            Excellent points Fox, not sure about Grey as it doesn’t matter a toss if the players don’t want to hit and stick. Cheika has more holes in his coaching than the Wallabies had on the scoreboard last night,

            The nz presss will give the AB’s a pay out for not keeping the foot on the neck and from Australia’s POV a 100+ scoreline would have gone a long way to hammering the obvioius into the Dumb BaaSt’s that this game was not a game of two halves.

            I am surprised the AB’s didn’t hunt down and kill off the few survivors who were still standing. It was a lost battle of those proportions.

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 10:40am
              Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 10:40am | ! Report

              No it wasn’t a game of two halves at all – but a game of one half where it was over after 28 minutes let alone 40 and the AB’s just started to throw the ball around Willy-nilly in the second half after scoring two early. Hansen will be giving them a serve for that one would imagine.

              I mean hats-off for the Wallabies capitalizing so credit to them there but the AB’s clearly took their foot off the floor and play some ill-disciplined rugby and as Hansen alluded to, the AB’s got carried away with how easy it was to score tries – now there is a sad statement in itself.

              Who can blame them? 40 points against the Wallabies in the first half is the worst in the history between the the sides but according to Cheika he backs his defensive coach

              Go figure!

              • August 20th 2017 @ 3:54pm
                Schuey said | August 20th 2017 @ 3:54pm | ! Report

                Cheika cant not back Grey until he is sacked. You cant sack him on the night of the test at the start of a 2 month series.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 11:01am
            Morsie said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:01am | ! Report

            I believe our No6 led the wallabies tackle count.

            • Roar Guru

              August 20th 2017 @ 12:27pm
              Fox said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:27pm | ! Report

              Hooper was best with 9 but missed 3 0 but yes the Wallaby no 6 was second with 8 and yes perhaps it was a bit harsh of me calling him a passenger – so fair point but where he is not a big hitter in the tackle for an international no6 and he also got found out was when he defended in the wide channels and failed to read the play – holding back when he should have gone forward and going forward when he should have kept drifting wide.

              It will come with experience but he needs to be more productive with the ball in hand and he needs to read the play better if Grey he is going to have him defend in the really wide channels. I mean if you look at what Squire did starting in his first test lets not forget – and in all aspects of play – it was two different classes of no6. Squires paces real weapon and big hitting.

              I think Coleman – who is pretty quick for a big guy – would be a good 6 because he has the physicality – and then you can bring Carter or someone else in at lock. Just a thought but anyway. But the Wallabies could bring in a lock at 50 minutes and shift Coleman to 6 like England do with Itoje and very effectively.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 12:53pm
                soapit said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:53pm | ! Report

                the dominant tackle stats would be pretty ugly reading

              • August 21st 2017 @ 3:37am
                Connor33 said | August 21st 2017 @ 3:37am | ! Report

                I like that Coleman at 6 idea. Even if we kept him in the second row for the scrums, he could play a bit wider, as he is by far the quickest second rower in the team. Probably faster than McMahon as his long stride is deceptive.

            • August 22nd 2017 @ 2:13pm
              Link said | August 22nd 2017 @ 2:13pm | ! Report


              And our No6 led the missed tackle count as well as having zero run meters.

        • Roar Rookie

          August 20th 2017 @ 11:04am
          Shane D said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:04am | ! Report

          Agree Miz, it wasn’t a case of losing interest as much as a case of losing shape.
          The AB’s went away from the things that they were doing well. They loosened up & started trying to go wide before making the punch through the middle. Created errors that let the boot off the neck.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 12:12pm
            Connor33 said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:12pm | ! Report

            Foot off the throat?

            • August 20th 2017 @ 12:21pm
              Jumbo said | August 20th 2017 @ 12:21pm | ! Report

              It means slack off.

        • August 20th 2017 @ 1:12pm
          Phantom said | August 20th 2017 @ 1:12pm | ! Report

          Agree….. This gloating of ‘ lost interest bs” is a myth.. the Abs were well aware that rugby is a 80m game. They always wanted to go for the kill from day one…esp. against the Aussies. Last night hey “lost interest” simply because their bench couldn’t match the opposition.

          • August 20th 2017 @ 2:57pm
            Ryan said | August 20th 2017 @ 2:57pm | ! Report

            Yet their coach and captain both stated they got caught up in the ease of the match and toom their foot off the pedal… You must know something they don’t.

        • August 20th 2017 @ 2:48pm
          taylorman said | August 20th 2017 @ 2:48pm | ! Report

          Yeah agree to an extent mzi, with any opposition they’re going to have their own purple patch so the ABs got that from the W’s at the start of the second half.

          But when the ABs went to the changing rooms at half time regardless of what was said the ABs knew 100% the result was known. No team on the history of test rugby has come back from that deficit. Not even close.

          Although they probably wanted to pile on more points there was only one side going into that half to prove a point, where at the start there were two.

          That combination lead to the tries, and credit to the Wallabies that they made the most of that. The rate they started if continued would have taken the match!.

          But we all knew that wasn’t gonna happen.

          • Roar Guru

            August 20th 2017 @ 3:00pm
            The Neutral View From Sweden said | August 20th 2017 @ 3:00pm | ! Report

            No team on the history of test rugby has come back from that deficit. Not even close.

            Especially against the AB’s. Anyone knows the biggest second half comeback in a Tier One Test rugby match?

            If the AB’s somehow completely fluffed up a first half, and the Wallabies got exactly everything their way and were 36 points up at half time, I could see the AB’s turning it around. But even that is pretty far fetched to be fair.

            • August 20th 2017 @ 5:52pm
              taylorman said | August 20th 2017 @ 5:52pm | ! Report

              Well not quite the answer but one of the most weird endings I’ve seen…well heard, as a kid live on radio… with the ABs was 1976 in a tour match versus the Quagga-Barbarians where the ABs with twenty minutes of the time left were 31-9 down, unheard of definitely before it and probably since. One of the biggest hidings ever was on the cards.

              ABs managed to then haul it slowly back and it took a scrambling wingers try in the corner..Kerry Tanner…still remember the name …to pip them 32-31 at the whistle. Still remember John Howsens call. One of those things that sticks.

              • Roar Guru

                August 20th 2017 @ 7:15pm
                The Neutral View From Sweden said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:15pm | ! Report

                Thanks for that memory T-man. I understand that it has stayed in your memory.

                The comeback against Ireland in 2013 was pretty special, probably the biggest comeback I have seen at Tier one level, but my memory bank only goes back to 1995 (before it was impossible to watch Rugby Union in Sweden).

              • August 20th 2017 @ 7:49pm
                taylorman said | August 20th 2017 @ 7:49pm | ! Report

                Yes have watched that try from the penalty tap onwards many a time and am amazed by the composure of so many players during the 12 or so phases under massive pressure.

                Any wrong move or decision at any time could have undone it all but patiently they went through the process and delivered. One of the best passages of test match rugby I’ve seen for that reason.

                Compare that to the idioti!c kicks of both Barrett and Cruden towards the end of one of the tests and you get to appreciate it more when it’s done well.

              • August 20th 2017 @ 11:21pm
                Samuel Honywill said | August 20th 2017 @ 11:21pm | ! Report

                Not a Test match but another one in recent memory was Wasps v Harlequins a few years back. Harlequins won 42-40 having been down 40-13 with about 20 minutes or so to go.

              • August 21st 2017 @ 10:55am
                lassitude said | August 21st 2017 @ 10:55am | ! Report

                Kerry Tanner was a prop. It’s hard to imagine him in a scrambling winger’s try. He was, also, a publican in Christchurch for a while – with a casual relationship to baseball bats and shotguns 🙂

              • August 21st 2017 @ 1:40pm
                ClarkeG said | August 21st 2017 @ 1:40pm | ! Report

                Tanner may have played in that 1976 game – he was on the tour – however the try scorer was Terry Mitchell and here it is….

          • August 20th 2017 @ 4:18pm
            soapit said | August 20th 2017 @ 4:18pm | ! Report

            perfect chance to try a few things as well after they hit 50 with 30 to go

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