Australia v. England player ratings - Green and Gold Rugby
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Australia v. England player ratings

Australia v. England player ratings

What a shithouse game, what a depressing performance. I am getting sick of this shit.

The game never rose to any great heights and we were beaten by a pretty average England side. Yes the officials were fucking appalling, but our performance wasn’t much better. Surely it is time for Link to wield the axe.

Anyway, here are my ratings:


slipper-wallabies-headshotJames Slipper

Time to go, surely. His ratings for the last five games have been 4,4,4,5 and 5. Has shown no signs of improvement, and no signs of his good form from the Reds earlier in the year. Scrum was once again a shambles, and his work rate was average – he didn’t even touch the ball. 2

Australian Wallabies Squad HeadshotsStephen Moore

Did a fair bit of work, but was a bit below his best. Maybe the long season is beginning to take its toll and with TPN back on deck he may get a rest soon. 5

Australian Wallabies Squad HeadshotsBen Alexander

Mr Mediocre. Missed tackles, only touched the ball a few times. Then there was the scrum, where he was well outpointed by Vunipola (regardless of the legality of his tactics). There doesn’t seem to be an obvious replacement, but it has to be time to give someone else a chance. 2


horwill wallabies profileJames Horwill

A slight form improvement. But we still need more. Got the ball in his hands a bit more, which was nice to see. Lineout struggled under his direction. 5

timani wallabies profileSitaleki Timani

Couldn’t replicate his good form off the bench. Work rate was low, contribution was very limited. Now to utter something I never thought I would say: come back Rob Simmons, we miss you… 3

FardyScott Fardy

Was having a decent enough game until he was carried off just after half time. Was a little bit outmuscled by the bigger English backrow, however. 5


Australian Wallabies Squad HeadshotsMichael Hooper

Our best forward, but that isn’t really saying much. Never gave up, made plenty of tackles and got us a nice turnover. If only a few of the other forwards had his heart, and he had their size. 6

MOwenBen Mowen

A forgettable start to his reign as captain. Had very little impact with ball in hand, made a good deal of tackles but in a game where we were beaten at the breakdown we needed more. Jury is still out on whether he has the leadership qualities to take this side any higher than where they are at the moment. 4

genia wallabies profileWill Genia

Hard to believe I gave him a 9 just two games ago. On Saturday he was bad, bad, bad. Hospital passes, errant kicks, no running game. He is so key to this team’s performance, and we really struggle to compete when he turns in a game like that. 2


CooperQuade Cooper

Not his best game, and a step back from the good form of the previous two games. A nice pass to Folau set up our only try, but he tempered that with five missed tackles and a wild pass on our own 22 which almost handed the Poms five points. Missed two crucial kicks late in the game. 5

nick cummins wallabies profileNick Cummins

Typical effort from the Badger. A little rough around the edges, but looked good when he had the ball in space. 6

ToomuaMatt Toomua

Was decent enough, and one of the few Wallabies who had the better of their English opponent. His try was well taken, and he looks to be growing in the No.12 jersey. But he kicked too often, and rarely found grass. 7


KuridraniTevita Kuridrani

Played well in patches, but he has had better days in gold. 6

aac cooper douglas wallabies profile

Adam Ashley-Cooper

A typically lionhearted display, and in a poor team performance he gets the gong for G&GR Man of the Match. Made a couple of nice breaks, and defended like a man possessed. Wasn’t his best ever game, but good enough. 7

folau wallabies profile

Israel Folau

Like many others he showed flashes of brilliance, but let himself down with poor option taking on a few occasions. Still looked like our most threatening back, though, and the Poms were clearly shit scared of him. 6


saia faingaa wallabies profileSaia Fainga’a

Played 12 minutes, didn’t do that much. No rating

Australian Wallabies Squad HeadshotsBenn Robinson

Came on for Slipper with 20 to go, and didn’t really improve our scrum. Took one nice pilfer though. 5

Australian Wallabies Squad Headshots

Sekope Kepu

The best case for keeping Ben Alexander in the team. Has had plenty of opportunities, but hasn’t done much to inspire any confidence. Battles hard, but just can’t make an impact. 4


DouglasKane Douglas

Played 18 fairly unmemorable minutes. 5

ben mccalman profileBen McCalman

Came on for Scott Fardy and played the last half hour. Didn’t do anything particularly noteworthy, but his stats were OK. 5

nic white profile wallabiesNic White

Looked like a fish out of water. Might have even been worse than Genia. Took bad options, kicked too often, missed touch on crucial penalty kick. 3


The patented G&GR ratings guide:

10 – A legendary performance to go down in the history books
9 – Outstanding performance: Man of the match shoo-in
8 – Excellent all-round game
7 – Good game with a few sparkles
6 – Solid performance
5 – Average – ho hum
4 – Below par
3 – Had a bad game
2 – Tell your story walking pal
1 – A complete joke

 

So am I on the money?

  • RubberLegs

    Rob Simmons is the goods. Genia played brilliantly compared to White. Albert Anae is the scrum answer. How can any half-back find rhythm when he feeds the scrum then has to run back to the sideline to wait for a penalty kick and no breakdown ball is ever secure. McCalman is better than Mowen. Even myopic Marto commented on Saia’s fierce tackling style; you have to watch all the players, not just your Tah mates. Two forwards tried to block the poms charging down Genia’s box kick and weren’t able to do it. It’s their job to give him space.

    • Hugh Cavill

      Albert Anae? You have to be joking, surely…

      • Mart

        ‘RubberLegs’ talks some a shit but I think I’m with him here. Because something needs to be done to mix it up.

        Paddy Ryan! SIo! Anae! anyone….. Bring back Rodzilla…..

        • Dave

          Absolutely. It’s a sad time when “anyone” would be better than the current lot.

      • Steve

        I don’t know…he can’t possibly scrummage worse than the 4 props in the squad which is depressing considering we are talking about the Reds 3rd string hooker. Palmer is the only Australian who might have the goods at the moment and he is ineligible (who knows if he’s actually up to it).

        Even if the props do shape up all their names are poison anyway. England got away with all sorts because of the perception they have the better props. May as well throw someone in there who hasn’t already got the reputation for being unable to hold up a scrum. Paddy Ryan and Dan Palmer for starting spots. Hell even try to rebrand Rodzilla and Greg Holmes as grizzled wily veterans who are scrum practitioners. Pretty much any suggestion could be plausibly better than who we have at this point…

        • Mica

          Paddy and Dan are both THs. I’ve never seen either play LH.

      • RubberLegs

        Last year Albert went through the middle of one SA teams scrum and when his opponent popped, Albert stood up too and smacked him out of sheer contempt.

        • Hugh Cavill

          Haha I can’t remember that. He only played a few super games, and was fairly average in the ITM Cup. Still a long way off International level.

        • Brandoaus75

          The slap alone should get him selected.

  • Yin Yang

    You’re leading sentence says it all, Hugh. I’m sick of this shit.

  • Dave

    I thought Scott Fardy was our best forward, not Hooper.

    A fair rating on both props and maybe Slipper will be dropped but I struggle to see how any of the Aus replacement LH props would make that much difference tbh. Robbo may be a shade better in the scrum but really he hasn’t managed to do anything extraordinary. Slipper is a young man with lots of potential and I’m willing to bet that if the back 5 start pushing in our defensive scrums we could be singing Slipper’s praises this time next week.

    If we’re looking to the future for the 2015RWC in my opinion we should only consider Slipper or Sio for that LH jersey.

    • Richo

      Fardy was probably better, but only played half the game.

  • Mart

    Pretty spot on ratings.

    New props please, time to mix it up. We have stuck with these guys for ages and there’s been no improvement. If anything it’s to our detriment because the scrum’s now getting the old reputation again.

    A team with the hearts of AAC and Hooper please.

    There could be an article here on the captaincy guys.

    For too long we have picked captains who lead by action and don’t seem to say much. The 2 biggest areas we seem to be deficient are ticker and smarts. And that starts from the top down. If the oppositions tight head is doing something illegal then talk to the ref about it.

    If the opposition are blocking you from making a tackle, then smash the bloke and force the ref to make a decision, Don’t just run around him and fruitlessly chase the run away player, leaving it a grey area.
    What’s happened to smart captains who can get the ref onside and keep some banter with him.

    Mix it up. AAC for captain now!

    • si_rangi

      I agree wholeheartedly and I have thought that way for a while now – AAC is probably one of he first players picked and has the experience and hopefully the respect of the team to be a good captain.

      • Gold12

        Can AAC captain from the wing though? He might have to go to Outside Centre if he was to become captain. And that would mean shafting Kuridrani. Actually, that’s not that bad of an idea to be honest.

    • Brandoaus75

      Totally agree, look how they went under Sharpy end of last year.

  • Pclifto

    Bit harsh on Kane Douglas, I thought he was pretty effective in his time off the bench. He put in a bone-crunching tackle on Farrell, which was probably the most memorable (in a good way) moments of the match.

    • Timbo

      Only time i cheered all match. Farrell looks like such a window licker when kicking goals.

      • Robson

        “Window licker?” Heard about all the “other’ lickers, but haven’t heard that one before!

      • Bill

        Funny that, as he addressed his first kick I was thinking he looked like Berrick Barnes, after his first two kicks I was chuckling and celebrating he looked like Berrick. Only thing is he’s got a pretty nice acceleration off the mark. I think Moore would have got him unimpeded, but that’s how it turned our.

        • Timbo

          Watch him when he kicks. He looks at the ball then slowly turns his head towards the posts mouth agape, brain barely functioning . I like to add a little ‘uugh’ as he turns his head like a caveman trying to work out fire.

        • Parker

          He looks like David Beckham’s mentally challenged brother, if he had one.

  • Pclifto

    What does Genia have to do to get a “1”? Easily the worst I’ve seen him play. Didn’t do anything effective the whole time he was on.

    Maybe he got a “2” simply because Nic White came on and somehow played even worse…

  • RugbyStu

    I would like to see Ewen put Scott Sio, Fotu Auelua and higgers (even if he is not 100%) on a plane immediately if only just to have them train with the squad. Need an injection of new blood…stat

    • Gold12

      Fotu Auelua should be in the squad. He is underrated and the Wallabies need his size and aggression. Let’s just hope he doesn’t soften into another Timani.

      • The Rant

        didn’t fotu have surgery post super season? thought there was a reason he wasn’t it the squads.
        I reckon Paddy Ryan needs a look in – he’s a bigger bloke who I reckon will do well with the new scrum rules and can bend a line with the odd charge.

        • Bairdy

          That’s what we need, another prop who can bend the line, but has trouble scrummaging even at super rugby level.

        • Jack Mallick

          He doesn’t have trouble scrummaging, holds himself fine. The more he learns the better he’ll get, and he’s got the build and attitude to have a crack I reckon.

      • Alan Grouse

        Fotu should be in the reckoning when he is fit. Probably not an 80min player (but when was Palu ever that?) but he is both dangerous in attack and defence and has some nice handling skills. The Saffas also are terrified of him

  • Hoges

    Hugh – you seem to have got this on the money this week…so few comments probably mean we are all in the doldrums.
    Think Fardy would have outplayed Hooper by a country mile, if he had not got injured.
    The Honey Badger, still looks like a “tradesman-like” winger but is at the very least consistent.
    and…fearing I will get howled down again…. our back row is horribly unbalanced with no impact from 7 or 8 in 90% of the play. Oppositions throw our 7 away consistently and don’t fear the 8 tackling or with ball in hand. (His opposite number, in his first ever Test, looked like a 50 cap veteran!). Pocock and Higgers can’t get back soon enough!
    Not sure what the answer is for the front row – we just don’t have the cattle. Would help if our Mowen and Hooper didn’t look like startled meerkats on every defensive scrum, instead of pushing.
    Great comment below about Captaincy ability too.

  • burngreg

    The English were much more generous, they thought you both played well. http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2013/nov/02/england-australia-player-ratings

    • Kevino

      WOW, They gave Horwill a 8 out of 10 when I think he is lucky with the 5 he got on here.

      Going to be a tough tour if they keep playing like that, when you look at the results from the Heineken Cup the English are not in the best form and it showed. Scotland, Ireland and Wales will all be gunning for Wallabies blood to improve their world ranking points.

      • RobC

        Poms have a point. Individually the forwards had v good moments eg Horwills first touch amd several carries. Douglas had a few good hits. Mowen disrupted a maul or two, few hits. Fardy over the ad line few times. Hooper scampered. Line out was very solid. Scrum, the abode of front row, however was a mixture of bad reffing, Poms angling in, and poor technique – whilst doing a decent job in pushing Poms around.

        But together they failed to threaten. Thankfully, the backs played well – but not well enough to overcome the ref and the English.

        It’s great to see we’re now finally looking at the root cause of our bad form. The pack. The other problem is how they coached and managed.

      • Brandoaus75

        They gave Horwill an 8 and Fardy a 6 – different game to the one I watched.

    • Gold12

      They gave Horwill an 8/10 rating FFS!

      • cantab

        Scott Allen on The R….another website gave him a 6/10. (Also BA a 2). I think Hugh is on the mark with a 5.

    • Will

      They’re just being nice, let’s hope the squad doesn’t read that paper. The wallabies were shithouse and need to harden the fuck up.

    • Old_Laurentian

      Try another UK paper! The Guardian always get Rugby wrong, as they do with most things.

  • Sam

    Two points. 1) Fitness or (passion/heart) in our forwards (especially the tight 5) seems to be really lacking. They just seem to be going through the motions. I think Paddy Ryan would be worth a shot. Moore looks tired and I think he needs a rest and the replacements need to be on notice too. 2) We still seem to be lost in defense, we take forever to get organised and too often get caught with most of the backs covering the short side and our forwards covering the open side. This could be a coaching problem (but if I can pick it up from the lounge room, I can only expect that McKenzie can see it). So if he can’t change the game plan with the current cattle maybe he needs a really good clean out, maybe some gutsy selection from grade might be worth a shot. Hell we’re losing anyway!

  • Rubgy

    Think of the season they’ve had. Most of the squad have played and lost super finals, a lions tour and a tri-nations that now has two extra games. These guys have never played so much top end footy in a season. Not to mention sacked coaches, sacked players, ARU finances down the toilet. It’s not surprising that they look mentally exhausted most times they run out of the dressing sheds. I’ve heard the AB’s use a psychologist. And those guys are up for it in EVERY game…

  • brumby runner

    I have some small disagreements. The replacement props did nothing more than the starters yet earned more rating points. I don’t think so. 2s for all of them.

    Here’s a thought. If Link wants to persist with Slipper/Alexander (which I hope he won’t) he should swap them immediately. Benny A is a better LH than TH and Slipper played TH ok at Super level.

    Lots of negativity in this article and comments about Nic White. Just watched the game a second time. Nic’s pass to Fat Cat near the end was less than average, but could have and should have been caught. He also threw a long forward cutout pass towards AAC but that was under penalty advantage and had no impact on the game. Otherwise, he kicked the ball a bit but not as ineffectually or indeed as unsuccessfully as Will. He is faster to the breakdown than Will and mostly clears the ball quicker. He did play betterthan Will and deserves a better rating.

    Sita’s influence on a game is absolute zero. He deserves no more than a 1.

  • Alan Grouse

    Considering our scrum woes and issues of forwards not working hard enough, its pretty unbelievablethat Scott Sio has been left in Canberra and not taken on the tour

    • The Rant

      I’m not convinced our front row deserve all the blame for the scrum (though a lot sure).
      Biggest problem is Australia’s whole attitude and approach to the scrum. These idiots in gold can’t seem to cotton on to the fact that other teams will USE the scrum to score penalities and turn the screws. We are shitscared of the scrum and just want to get the ball out and think this is what a scrum is.

      Every bloody pom scrum we seemed to assume that they – like us – would just use the scrum to get the ball out quick as you like and pass to the backs. How many english scrums were actually pretty solid from our side for the first 5 seconds and then instead of the halfback picking it up and passing they just waited 2 more seconds and shoved again and the aussie scrum (with a backrow of meercats by this point) just got split and a penalty awarded. We need to have 7 or 8 pushing and shoving until someone finally yells ‘break’. It was so plain and obvious to watch. It’s not over until its over – Just keep fucking pushing.

      • Alan Grouse

        totally agree mate. Laurie fisher said something very similar. We most certainly do not have the world’s most powerful scrum so we need every man giving the scrum every bit of his attention until its done

      • BloodRed

        Perfect rant Rant. How I’d love to see a game where it is apparent that every member of the forward pack realizes that their number priority every scrum and for the full duration of the scrum, is the fucking scrum. On the weekend we had less trouble on our feed than on theirs. That’s just backwards. It means on our feeds we have props that are pushing straight and the backrow is staying attached and driving. We can do it but on the opposition feed everyone acts like it is a mungo scrum and wants to be out making a tackle on the winger.
        I’d also like to see our props turn around after a dud scrum and tear the flankers and that fucking prairie dog Mowen a new one for not pushing. Smack them in the face if necessary. No props in the world are good enough to 5 against 8 and not fail. I got to pack on the side of the scrum with some props who had been coached by Alec Evans and if I’d detached from the scrum like the wallabies’ flankers do, it would have required a Mt Everest style base camp and oxygen cylinders to retrieve my head from how far up my arse they had shoved it.

  • Brian

    Here’s an idea. Let’s stop contesting scrums! Let them have the ball. This way we won’t give it to them anyway on the end of a penalty and heaven knows we have no compunction about giving them the ball often enough with all the kicking, dropped balls and pathetic rucks and mauls. Even gives us an opportunity to have our defence to stop blowing and front up. Maybe not!

    Also, where does it say in the coaching manual that if you are a forward running off the side of a ruck that your primary intention must be to fall on the ground and not contest the contact? Geez we’re good at that.

  • Working Class Rugger

    I think it’s time to look to generation next in the front row department. Bring in Sio and Ryan and give them the rest of the tour to get into the swing of things. Both a good, strong scrummagers and add a lot on the field in terms of work rate and impact in contact.

    Our scrum wasn’t helped by the ref overlooking the English tactics but it’s time to move on from the current crop.Even Robinson, whom I’ve have supported.

    • Hugh Cavill

      But the thing is Slipper IS the next generation, he is only 24 (I think). Same age as Ryan. Agree they deserve a chance, but I don’t think we should bin Alexander and Slipper completely.

      • cantab

        Surely Fat Cat > BA though?

        • Davey

          they play different positions

        • brumby runner

          But shouldn’t.

  • RedsFanDan

    I think referee management is a key component of getting our scrum reputation sorted out. After that first scrum Ben A blew up because he knew exactly what was going on, when he was subbed for Kepu you could see him warning him about the boring in. He needed to communicate that to Mowen and Mowen needed to be in the ref’s ear until it was addressed.

    If you look back at our ‘poor’ scrum performances over the last year, you’ll see that many were the result of illegal tactics on the part of the opposition. Look at Vunipola’s performance in the Lions scrum once the ref was on to him. Vunipola looked dominant because he was allowed to get away with some pretty blatant boring in. Not sure I saw Mowen ask the ref to look at it once.

    Poor skippering.

  • RobC

    Too high: Hooper. Shouldn’t give points for effort, only impact and results. No one in fowards deserve more thsn 4.
    Too low: Cooper, Kuridrani, Cummins.

    • RobC

      Except Fardy.

    • Ruckin Oaf

      Yeah Link certainly deserves credit for sorting Quade Cooper out. Now maybe somebody can pay some attention to the rest of the team,

  • Stephen Larkham

    bit harsh on the penalising horwill for the lineout struggling don’t you think? pretty sure we won 10 from 11 and yoinked 2 of theirs

  • Davy

    Give them all a 1, after all it was “a complete joke” performance against a poor England side without any of their Lions in the starting team.
    Mike Brown the English full-back who was named MOM sums up the difference between the teams, he is no world beater but he wants it more, and is prepared to work harder.

  • Robson

    The scrum, especially the front row, has come in for a lot of stick and you don’t need 20:20 vision to see why. Notwithstanding a whole bunch of individual shortcomings, the scrum looked to my former LH prop eyes like a jelly skating on a custard pudding. Cohesive effort from the scrum throughout the engage and shove process seemed to me to be about zero. I wouldn’t change too many of the personnel just yet, but I sure as hell would be asking the scrum coach to get his act together. To me the scrum looks like its been coaching itself.

  • Bill

    Well I disagree. First of all they are improving. Even if Hugh or the refs don’t recognise it. The scrum were better than England’s, for quite a bit of the game. Thanks to vunipola. Corbiesero would probably shift that balance. The English adapted well though and got on top there in spots.

    It’s feast or famine with these ratings. And it seems more connected to the scoreboard than the performance.

  • Bairdy

    Generous with Mowen’s rating. Apart from his proficiency at the lineout, he, along with the rest of the backrow, are falling short at scrumtime with their shove, when it is imperative we have all the weight we can get behind our technically-weak front row.

    Also, I had a look at some rugby stats, and our backrow’s workrate is just not high enough. Their ruck involvements, tackles, runs stats are almost depressing compared with their English counterparts. One stat in particular (on ESPN stats I think) said Mowen had 2 carries the whole game… for 1m.

    I hate to be negative about Mowen, but I think ever since the Lions series, he has been in self-preservation mode – playing as many games as he can. Either that or Link’s gameplan is to have our backrow sit in the midfield with our tight five for that “next play” (which is probably the more likely of my assertions).

  • Mark

    How many tests in a row do we need to loose or get penalised in virtually every scrum, and how many tests do we need to loose on the back of no set piece before we’re willing to try something different.? Anything? Surely at this stage we absolutely can’t do any worse than letting Paddy Ryan, Tilse, Robinson or anyone else have a crack. Surely after a lost Lions tour, being destroyed at every scrum in the tri-nations and now having been blown away in England we’ve hit rock bottom, so we let someone else step up and see what they can do?

  • GD

    Given you gave the half backs 2 & 3 and we know they are both good players, perhaps it says something about the pressure they were under rather than them personally?

  • Old_Laurentian

    Yep, on the money with your ratings. While most of the comment is properly focused on the forwards, I felt that Izzie failed to pass several times with good support available. Does he need to understand that a half break and pass is better than a failed spectacular full break attempt? As a past leaguie, he needs to watch SBW more.

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