Five Things I Loved About The Wallabies’ Win

Hugh Cavill November 20, 2012 45

No GravatarWith all this Quade Cooper shit breaking, I decided to think back to a simpler, better time in Australian rugby. Remember when we beat England at Twickers? What a glorious day that was….

I’ve cracked the shits with all these ‘experts’ and their ‘rational analysis’ that tell me that there were flaws in the Wallabies’ game on Sunday. From where I was sitting I didn’t see any. All I saw was 15 blokes in gold giving it to the Poms at Twickers with both barrels. And winning. Is there anything better?

Here are the five things I enjoyed most:


The Honey Badger

The only winger whose pace is literally explosive

This guy just doesn’t give a shit. And I love it. In the previous two Tests he had some good moments, but never quite dominated like I knew in my heart of hearts he could. All that changed on Saturday. He just roamed the field like a wild animal, snapping necks and cashing cheques. Kicking arse and taking names. Tackling Poms and catching bombs. (Except that one early, but I have forgiven him for that. Actually I think that was the only one he had. But the rhyme was just too good to ignore.)

You get the picture. I love the enthusiasm and physicality this guy exudes, and in my eyes he is now our number 1 winger. The one moment that summed it up best for mine was this: it’s the 78th minute. We have a scrum on our 22. We need to keep the ball in hand, and take the Poms out of the game. The scrum ball is solid, Phipps gets clean ball and passes to a rampaging Cummins at full tilt. He breaks the first two tacklers and makes 20 metres. Game over — thank you ball boys, thank you linesmen. Long live the Badger, may his reign of tyranny never end.


The Scrum

It wasn’t quite as sweet as watching the Fuse take down Andy Sheridan in 2008 (otherwise known as the greatest day in the history of mankind), but it still was pretty fucking sweet. Coming off our worst scrum performance in years against the French, the dirty Poms were licking their cod-stained lips in anticipation of yet another demolition derby at the set piece. By the end they were leaving Twickers in droves, with their lager-soaked tails between their fat, pasty legs. Benny Alexander was brilliant, and Benny Robbo also excellent. Once again the sweet chariot became a busted-down old pile of wood, as we rogered the English at scrum after scrum. Then they started collapsing, and we started reaping the rewards on the scoreboard. It doesn’t get much better than that.


The Chip Kicks

Those sweet, frothy juices

I have bemoaned the scourge of chip-kicking like every other sane rugby fan, but on the weekend something glorious happened — they actually worked. But more than that, they worked not because the English handled them badly, or weren’t prepared, but because they were well-executed kicks with chasers at the ready. We showed that when done well, it is a tactic that is very hard to defend against; even when the Poms regathered we had them on the back foot at the ensuing ruck (and should have pinched a turnover on one occasion).

You know how the old saying goes: if at first you don’t succeed, keep persisting for months and months until you finally work out how to do it the right way — then drink the luscious juices of victory.


The Speed

For once the Wallabies played an up-tempo game, and had the organisation and skills to match! Too often we have tried to play quickly, but the halfback has found a disorganised backline and forwards standing around like Brown’s cows. Not on the weekend. We had forwards hitting the line at speed, backs willing and able to spread the ball to the wingers, who (shock, horror) made ground out wide! And when it all broke down, we decided to do it all again! Not to mention plenty of offloading in contact, and a good dose of mongrel to keep our ball at the breakdown. Super stuff.


The Defence

Not in MY house, bitch

While the general solidness of our line was something to behold, I was even more pleased by the big plays we pulled off in defence. It was stuff you’d expect the AB’s to do, but never us. Think Cliffy Palu ripping the ball off a hapless Pom as he dived for the line. Think Berrick Barnes executing the perfect grasscutter tackle on a flying Chris Ashton, then swinging his legs into touch. Think Michael Hooper chasing down Toby Flood as he looked to be in a gap and away. Think every time the ball came near the Honey Badger’s wing. We bashed ‘em up, plain and simple. And it was a joy to watch.


So there are five things that will hopefully brighten your Tuesday. And I’m sure there will be people who will insist I ‘not get carried away’, or try and highlight the negatives. But I don’t care. I insist on drinking the sweet nectar of victory, just for a few days at least. I encourage you all to do the same.

So forget Quade and his shenanigans, let’s focus on the one thing that matters: the Wallabies’ battle with those greasy Eye-talians this weekend!

Did I miss anything? What did you like most about the Wallabies’ effort?

Discussion

  • http://www.greenandgoldrugby.com/ Matt Rowley

    Fucking awesome baabaa

    Two things I loved:

    1) It was the first international I’ve taken my son to. He’s now got high expectations!

    2) Seeing Ashton not score

    • http://twitter.com/LeftArmSpinner LeftArmSpinner

      matt, you have created a rod for your own back. just like flying business class before you can afford it every time!!!!

      Father and son time. does it get better??

      • http://www.greenandgoldrugby.com/ Matt Rowley

        It’s gonna be tough to replicate. Might have to pick and choose a bit….

  • le roo

    Long live the badger!!

  • Animal

    Im going down to the RSPCA nad finding myself a Honeybadger.

  • Mart

    Love it!

    Another positive. Phipps showed some of his 7′s experience and ran the ball well in broken play

  • Robson

    I want to see Cummins get a run at o/s centre for the Wallabies. He’s got all the keys to the house to be another Stirlo.

    • Blinky Bill of Bellingen NSW

      Hang on a minute Robbo. Wouldn’t moving our best winger (think I’ve got that right) to another pozzie be doing a Robbie?

      Besides what did AAC not do well enough for you?

      Surely it’s about time we sort out ‘our best in position’ (and a back-up) and bloody well leave them there. It’s playing people out of position that’s 1/2 our problem.

      • Robson

        I get your drift mate (about Robbie) and I kinda agree, but I just happen to think that he is a better OS centre than a wing and, no disrespect to AAC who had an awesome match on Saturday, Cummins, in my humblest of humble opinions, is the closest thing we have got to the keg of dynamite that Stirlo used to be. I actually think that Dingo got it wrong when he placed Cummins originally on the wing, because it has been at OS centre where the HB excelled (in an often beaten up side) for the Force. But it is just my opinion and being a mortal spectator (and a bloody old one too) I could be wrong!!

        • Blinky Bill of Bellingen NSW

          Unfortunately I didn’t get to watch a lot of the Force games. However, I was extremely impressed with Cummins’ last minute barn storming surge into English territory and his ball security (bar one incident I believe?). So I can certainly see where you are coming from. And I guess we’re not as short of wingers as we are good 13′s.

          So there you go. I can argue both sides of the fence. And I’m happy to do it ;-)

        • Big Ted

          I too would prefer to see the badger at OC. I am a lover of Adam 2 Dads from way back, but since 2010, I feel that AAChas been on a steady decline in regards to form. I love the fact that he is so versatile, and that he is a balls to the wall give it all wallaby on just about every occasion, but I think he has lost his ability to break or bend the line, and I feel like the long haired lout from the west could be the man!

          Kills me to say it…

        • moaning expat

          Disagree completely AAC was looking to fade away in 2010 and was almost completely ignored by the public. I saw he had the heart of a lion and would be the most valuable player and have been proven right. He only just gets better and you are mistaking (the only player that hasnt had a bad match) from getting worse for being at his peak consistently. He cant get better! Pocock was another one i picked in 2010 as a potential great who was at the time ‘looked over’ by the public. Consistency is the only thing we dont have have in the Wobblies and you want to bin the only guy that has shown any??

  • Fatflanker

    Purple…Tinky Wink…Pom front row. Coincidence? I think not.

  • chequebalance

    The Badger bagged some meat!

  • muffy

    Getting carried away Barb – love it – we watch sport for the highs it brings, to deny ourselves the joy and celebration of a win is just plain stupid.

    The badger is becoming a rugby rock star … deservedly…

    The one thing that would have made it six things to love would be if someone – I don’t care who – even the waterboy, punched Ashton in the face….sigh ….if only

  • http://twitter.com/Bay35Pablo Paul Jurdeczka

    I think that was a cool, calm and reasoned analysis. Especially the pasty legs comment.

    As they say – I support 2 teams, Australia and whoever’s playing England.

  • redbull

    Good attempt Barbar….but you should have watched the second half! 30 minutes of sheer terror watching a side desperately trying not to win, only to be beaten to the losers tag by a side that lost its head.

    CHIP KICKS! wtf are you doing encouraging them! Five of them! One a game is unexpected and gets the defence in two minds. Five is a lack of any other idea.

    On the Honey badger, I hope Cummins has encouraged more people to find docos on these creatures. You couldn’t kill one with a shovel full of concrete.

  • http://twitter.com/JackNorton8064 Jack Norton

    Gold! I’ll buy you a schooner of the sweet nectar of victory for today’s article.

  • USARugger

    “Long live the badger, may his reign of tyranny never end.”

    Fucking brilliant, I was holding my side throughout that entire first piece

  • NJK

    That article made my day!

  • RJ

    How into the honey badger is Cummins really? I reckon a few of the force boys were watching a doco and Cummins made one comment, so someone the next day called him a honey badger and it stuck. Now the poor guy can’t have a single interview without being asked about how he channeled the honey badger. its hilarious.

  • FatProp

    Does anyone have footage of the Baxter vs Sheridan steamroller? Would dearly lover to see that again…

  • Gibbo

    Barbs – can’t forget the effort of Poida (the Ref Romain Poite) Ive watched the scrums back trying to find fault in his scrum decisions. I couldn’t find one. Australia played the Euro game by drawing pens in front of the posts and it paid off.

    It would have been game over if the Poms had called for a scrum instead of 3 poorly executed line outs at the 55 minute mark.

    There were a few dubious breakdown decisions – but this guy knows his scrum laws.

    • Brumby Runner

      Agree. The ref let a lot go at the breakdown on both sides and contributed to an enjoyable game. Only howler I saw was failing to penalise the poms for offside and entering from the side when the Wallabies forced a turnover on one occasion.

  • Moz

    Also, when Poite said “Stand up Pink” addressing the pommy forwards. That said it all about their nancy-boy kit!

  • Blinky Bill of Bellingen NSW

    Is that actually a photo of a honey badger or has someone played with photo shop?

    I thought a honey badger was something like the British badger, from Wind in the Willows fame, but with a sweet tooth and a love of bee hives or something.

    But holy cow if I came home and found that angry looking thing running around the place, I’d jump in the 4×4 and head for the hills. Either that or I’d get the missus to sort it out.

    • redbull

      Honey badgers eat cobra snakes

    • http://www.greenandgoldrugby.com/ Brumby Jack

      You should see him in training for the Lions series…

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iksnk1YVkac

      • Blinky Bill of Bellingen NSW

        Great viewing thanks. And they look just like the photo. Wouldn’t win too many beauty contests but boy they are seriously tough creatures!

  • Chops

    How about the AAC turnover under pressure? Woop!

  • The Rant

    I loved watching a TRY. But having watched the replay twice since I reckon we left 3 more out on the park at least. 2 of them from bad last passes from Taps to the badger and one where phipps just needed to take it off th fwds on the line and barnes would have been under the sticks but the forwards tried to surge again and got held up. Hoping Australia cuts sick this saturday.
    And who doesn’t love hearing the ref calling the poms pink. Spose its a bit annoying if you have to say ‘hands away regal purple 7′

  • mxyzptlk

    I woke my wife up laughing out loud at this piece.

  • TC63

    Good summary. Definitely saw an increased focus to offload the ball in the tackle – like the French did to us last week.
    This seems to be the most simple way to attack and yet we seem to be the laggards in world, however some green shoots appearing here.
    Take my hat off to Deans. After being beaten by the French he has decided to copy their playbook.
    Maybe his new mantra: “Popping the pass is a bit like – Lets play with what is behind you….”

    Cheers
    TC

  • muppet

    Campo…
    Ealsey…
    Stirlo…

    If there’s one thing we have produced over the years it’s shite nicknames. My lowest ebb was watching “Clarkie”, “Kearnsie”, “Marto” and “Canno” interview – wait for it – “Gerrardo”. [sigh].

    But FINALLY the Honey Badger treads the world’s stage with a decent nickname. We’re not ready to compete with the jaarpies who use theirs as there first name (Bakkies, Os) but it’s progress.

    And that’s what I loved!

    • A. Fox-Russell

      Gerrado…awesome.

  • Parra

    Laughing my guts out at this:
    ‘Once again the sweet chariot became a busted-down old pile of wood..’

  • Redman

    If you didn’t see any flaws Hugh Im worried about ya!

  • Redman

    If everybody thinks our backs were great and our scrumaging heroic,gee standards really have droped as a nation. Did anyone even stop to think how crap england was? France,abs,saffas would of put 40 on those chumps.we are in for long year next year.

  • Zuriel

    I loved how they played to Cummins strengths. It you make the rights plays at the right time and use the individual strengths, magic will happen. This game the timing of Cummins hitting the ball at full pace made the difference of his effectiveness.

  • Garry

    An interesting post match clip, featuring M Lynagh, Jason Robinson, and the two coaches. Worth a watch. Having traveled overseas myself, watching Deans speak, I’m not sure that English is his language of first choice.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/video/2012/nov/19/england-australia-twickenham-react-video

    • Brumby Runner

      Good to see the English coach supporting his players and captain after the game. Not the implied criticism that Deans lays on the Wallabies after a loss.

  • armatt

    “… the dirty Poms were licking their cod-stained lips in anticipation of yet another demolition derby at the set piece. By the end they were leaving Twickers in droves, with their lager-soaked tails between their fat, pasty legs.”

    Possibly the best two sentences ever written on this fine website.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cameron.mcdonald.9674 Cameron McDonald

    In regards to the bomb that the Honey Badger dropped… after a pretty close look in slow-mo it actually looks as if it comes off Sharples forearms. The Badger doesn’t look to get a touch on it at all. Makes his report card virtually spotless now, as it should be.

  • Brumby Runner

    One particular moment summed up a lot about the Wallabies’ performance for me. Tapuai catches a kick through and under extreme pressure almost in touch passes the ball to the Honey Badger who then plays on. Excellent instinctive play by two players who haven’t had their skills coached out of them yet.

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