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Wales vs Australia
International, 12 November, 2017
|Fulltime - Wales 21, Australia 29|
|Referee: Glen Jackson|
|Touch judges: Jaco Peyper & Ian Tempest|
|TMO: Graham Hughes|
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Australia have beaten Wales by 29 points to 21 in Cardiff and stretched their winning streak over the Welsh to 13 in a row.
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Australia play Wales early on Sunday morning at Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Wales as the Wallabies continue their Spring Tour. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, starting from 4:15am AEDT.
It’s an interesting time for both teams as talk amongst fans is shifting to Japan 2019 especially considering these teams will meet in the group stages at the tournament.
The Wallabies are starting to put together a good run of form – undefeated in six games now – and this tour should give Cheika a chance to develop some more rhythm and depth within his squad.
Depth is critical for the Aussies as they are going to need bolster their broader squad’s experience if they want to be still standing in the business end of the World Cup.
The lack of a quality replacement for Bernard Foley is still a bit alarming but the Aussie bench is growing in experience in other positions – this match sees over 290 caps sitting on the sidelines eager to get on at some point.
Ned Hanigan gets another start which will surprise some – the youngster has plenty of heart but his recent performances have shown him wanting when it comes to the impact he has on a match.
Karmichael Hunt will be frustrated not to start at fullback or in the centres. With Israel Folau being rested for the entire tour, he’d have hoped to get plenty of game time but Sunday will see Kurtley Beale start at the back and the power pairing of Marika Koroibete and Tevita Kuridrani start in the centres in a very Warren Ball-style set up.
Speaking of Warren Ball, on the Welsh side it’s apparently the starting of a new era. There’s no space for Jamie Roberts, George North or Alex Cuthbert and the indications are that Warren Gatland is looking for a change in the way that Wales attack.
He’s given a debut to playmaker Owen Williams at 12 meaning that the Welsh midfield is lighter and, hopefully, more creative. Of course it’ll be interesting to see whether these players can stand up to the power of Koroibete and Kuridrani.
Sadly for the Welsh, they are missing some key players from injury in the forwards which is going to make things even tougher than they promised to be. The absence of Sam Warburton and Justin Tipuric from the backrow means over 120 caps missing and this could well leave the Welsh struggling at the breakdown where Michael Hooper will fancy his chances for some turnover action.
One match up that will be exciting to see is the battle in the second row between Adam Coleman and Adam Jones. The wise old campaigner was a key member of the British and Irish Lions strong performance against the All Blacks this year and has been regarded as one of the best locks for many years.
Coleman is growing into his role as a leader within the Wallabies team and will be eager to impress against the well respected Jones.
While the Welsh will be a harder prospect than Japan, the Wallabies run of good form should see them continue their dominance over the men in red.
Australia to win by 12.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, starting at 4am AEDT on Sunday morning.