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Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News mourns the Wallabies loss and recaps the rest of the World Cup, the NRC and the women’s sevens.


Toyko Terror

WAL016

The Wallabies have gone down in a nail biter against Wales 29-25 in Tokyo.

After trailing by as many as 18 points early in the second half, the Wallabies scored 17 unanswered points to pump hope back into the tires of Australian fans.

Unfortunately, those tires hit a rock and deflated, with the Aussies failing to finish off the comeback, falling to just their third World Cup loss in the pool stages.

For a more in-depth look at the game, check out Nick’s player ratings.

Despite the slow start, the main talking point out of the game was the controversial refereeing by Romain Poite and the rest of his crew.

The decision to penalise Samu Kerevi for the poor tackling technique of Rhys Patchell and the inability to find the rewind button when Gareth Davies snatched an intercept try from what appeared to be an off-side position cost the Wallabies 10 points in the match, which turned out to be crucial.

This enraged Michael Cheika after the match, who drew comparisons to the tackle that got Reece Hodge three weeks.

“It was pretty funny because I thought I saw that tackle before, it could have been Reece Hodge, I’m not sure,” Cheika joked.

“When out guy makes that tackle and has the high tackle framework in his head he gets suspended,

“But this guy doesn’t think about the framework and we get penalised.

“As a former rugby player, I’m embarrassed by that,

“I don’t know the rules anymore, I don’t know anymore”

Cheika also blasted Poite for his adjudication at scrum-time, accusing him of not allowing the Wallabies to pack probably.

“Any positives we take we’ll keep to ourselves I think because we were looking good in the scrum tonight, got penalised,” Cheika said.

“I’m not sure, maybe Australia is not allowed to scrum any good.

“I’ll just keep it to myself.

“I know you’re expecting me to go so I’ll keep my powder dry and see where we end up.”

World Cup Wrap

image2

After a break on Friday, the rugby began Saturday afternoon with a crushing 28-12 win to Argentina over Tonga.

The Pumas were boosted by a rapid first-half hat-trick to hooker Julian Montoya, equalling Argentina’s record for the most tries in a single World Cup match set by Martin Gaitan in 2003.

The bonus-point win revives their bid for a Rugby World Cup quarter-final place before their must-win game over England on October 7.

This was followed by the “Shizuoka Shock”, where host nation Japan pulled off a 19-12 upset win over former number one ranked Ireland.

Replacement winger Kenki Fukuoka struck the killer blow to replicate their miracle in Brighton in 2015, putting them in prime position for top spot in the group.

Japan coach Jamie Joseph was thrilled by the result saying “We were preparing for three years and Ireland probably since Monday, so we felt like had an advantage. The boys will have a couple of beers tonight.”

The final game of Saturday saw South Africa blow out Namibia with a dominant 57-3 win.

The two-time champions recorded one of their biggest Rugby World Cup wins with five tries in the first half and another four in the second to sweep Namibia aside.

Coach Rassie Erasmus was pleased with the win, hoping the crushing victory can help springboard their side heading forward.

“We will build from this and now we’ve got this big Italy game which probably will determine if we go through to the quarter-finals or not…I think this game will give us a nice springboard to go into that game.”

The final non-Wallaby match from the weekend was run and won by Georgia, who were too strong for the giant-killers Uruguay 33-7.

A dominant forward display laid the foundation for an impressive victory by Georgia, who recorded the bonus-point victory.

They took a slim 12-7 lead heading into the half-time break, before tries to Levan Chilachava, Otari Giorgadze and Giorgi Kveseladze secured the result.

NRC Recap

Isaac Lucas chips ahead

Isaac Lucas chips ahead

With just three weeks remaining in the NRC, the top four has been thrown into chaos by some extraordinary results.

We start in the nation’s capital, where the Canberra Vikings overcame a spirited Fijian Drua to win 41-28.

With both teams sharing fourth position heading into the match, this match was crucial for their finals aspirations and it was the Vikings’ Brumby contingency that stepped up when it mattered.

Doubles to Toni Pulu and Tom Banks reminded the competition of their threat heading into the finals, helping the Vikings gain the bonus-point victory.

This was followed by the Queensland derby, where it was the folks from the Country that grabbed bragging rights with a 42-26 win over Brisbane City.

After a poor fortnight, where they lost to Sydney and Melbourne, Country played an intense, physical style of football that stunned their City rivals from the start.

Doubles to halfback Tate McDermott and no.8 Harry Wilson helped secure the Andy Purcell Cup for another year, keeping the Country’s finals hopes alive.

The bonus-point victory in front of a strong crowd at Marley Brown Oval in Gladstone pushes Queensland Country to fifth place on the ladder.

Sunday rugby started in Sydney, where the Melbourne Rising continued their revival with a 40-26 win over Sydney.

The Rising signalled their intent to play through the forwards in the opening minutes, with Anaru Rangi scoring a quick-fire double inside 15 minutes.

From their, Melbourne would dominate the proceeding, running in six tries to keep their faint hopes of the post-season alive.

Rangi and Justin Marsters were the key men for the Melbourne side, each recording doubles in the crushing win.

We finish the round in NSW with a huge upset, as NSW Country Eagles defeated the previously unbeaten Western Force 38-24.

The Eagles bounced back after a disappointing loss to the Rising, sprinting to a 14-0 lead within ten minutes.

They would control the contest from here, dominating the contest to launch themselves up into second place on the ladder.

Griffith reign supreme

Cassy Staples University of QLD Women's 7s (Photo credit RugbyAU MediaKaren Watson)

Griffith University has won the second round of the 2019 Aon University Sevens Series, defeating the University of Queensland 21-7 in the final at Bond University on the Gold Coast.

Queensland Uni came into the contest favourites, having won the opening round on home turf and they continued their dominance on day one, having topped their group and cruised their way through their semi-final over Canberra Uni.

However, Griffith made a strong run throughout the tournament, upsetting Pool B champions Sydney Uni on their way to the final.

In the battle of the two series winners, the 2018 winners (Griffith) scored three tries to the 2017 winners (Queensland Uni) one in one of the competitions most competitive finals.

The Canberra Uni took out the bronze medal final in the second leg of the series after defeating Sydney Uni 12-10.

The result seeing the side place for the first time in the competitions three-year history.

Hosts, Bond University, also sought redemption following their round one result finishing in sixth after going down to the University of Adelaide 26-14.

In other matches, the University of Melbourne won their final game of the day against the University of New England while UTS defeated the University of Western Australia in the seventh-place playoff.

Griffith University Head Coach, Moana Virtue said: “That win meant more to the side than all the wins we had in the 2018 competition.

“This round of the series has been the most competitive we’ve ever seen.

“We had a lot of new girls in the side, and I’m proud of the way in which they dug deep and the effort that they put in; we won this tournament as a team.

“It’s important that we take this time to enjoy the win before we reassess at training on Tuesday and look towards round three.”

The contest will head to Adelaide for the third round of the four-round series in a fortnight.

  • sambo6

    I made a very simialr comment in the player rating article, but it deserves to be said again here…

    I blame Cheika completely and totally for this loss.

    On one hand, Wales have been planning for this game for 2 years (since the draw was announced), and bring a settled side

    And on the other, you have the wallabies selecting a backline that’s never played together as a unit before today. As a result, in attack we looked stuttering and disjointed. And MOST CRUCIALLY, it has taken the coach 4 years and 44 minutes to realise what all already knew about Bernard Foley…..

    While the forward exchanges are vital, its no coincidence that as soon as Foley got hooked, we looked a different side.

    But after the first half, the mountain was too high to climb….

    And Cheika’s demeanor in the presser was appalling, but unfort not surprising…..

    Feel sorry for some good players who’s best years have been wasted with this coach in charge…this applies to both players he has picked, and players he hasn’t….

    • Brisneyland Local

      Cheika the ass clown

      • Geoffro

        More embarrassment in the post match presser.What a fuckwit

        • Brisneyland Local

          A slight on our nation.

        • Geoffro

          It was actually.its a sports tournament.The Japanese have done so much to bring goodwill and he just acts like a turd on the same stage.

        • Brisneyland Local

          100%. I could never imagine a Japanese import coach acting like that. They would know the lossof face that would cause the Japanese nation, and the embarassment that would bring.

        • Hoss

          Contrast that with Joe Schmidt who must have been similarly hurting but…..

          I blame the ref for selecting Spanners at 10.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Yep. Cheika is truly the Herpes of Australian rugby. The gift that keeps on giving.

        • UTG

          Yeah Schmidt started bagging Angus in the post match interview. What a class act.

        • Hoss
        • UTG

          I appreciate he did well in the presser but I wasn’t impressed that his first reaction was to bag Angus in the post match interview. There was also a hell of a lot of less controversy in that game.

        • Hoss

          Fair enough. I did also see Schmidt’s post game presser from the sidelines and he was clearly miffed at a ‘few decisions’

          Ink is dry for us now. Build momentum again. Pick our best Xv from here on in and be in control of our own destiny. TO be frank to be world champs you have to beat the best, whether thats a QF, SF or Final is largely irrelevant.

        • UTG

          Well said. At least we’ll either have a quick exit from the WC in the QFs, and we’ll have a new coach and everyone can calm down, or, if we’re successful, we’ll plunder Pommy hearts and wipe the smirk from Eddy Jones. I’m still holding on to the hope that France or Argentina do us a favour and England and Wales meet in the quarter and self-combust in a fire of box kicks and drudgery.

        • Hoss

          Id vote for that plan.

        • Sri Ranas

          My fantasy too :)

        • Hoss
        • Yowie

          Hypothetically, how much embarrassing carry-on might we expect from a half-Japanese coach who grew up in Australia but has had coaching gigs in Australia and Japan (plus some reflected Saffa glory)?

        • Brisneyland Local

          He has spent to long in Australia to forget his Japanese heritage.

        • Damo

          Mate, I might be misreading this, but for the first time ever I thought Michael Hooper looked uncomfortable sitting next to Cheika with his shit body language arms folded responses at the presser.

        • Yowie

          If it were my fictionalised film, that would be the moment of flash-back to whatever part Hooper played in helping Link out the door to bring in Cheika in 2014.

          (I don’t know anything about what went on behind closed doors back then, but in my mind/story Hooper was agitating for their premiership-winning Waratah’s coach to take his rightful place as Wallabies coach ASAP)

        • Damo

          So, it’s taken Hooper 5 years to have his Dr Frankenstein “What have I done??!!!!” moment.

        • Yowie

          Cognitive dissonance is a powerful handbrake on a person’s ability to see facts as they are. Particularly when the person has already personally invested hard in the Nigerian opportunity.

        • Damo

          Cognitive dissonance. Cheika’s regime has been riddled with, and defined by, contradictory ideas and beliefs. The results in the last 4 years tell me a lot about the confusion and unease that’s so often been in the minds of 23 young men sent out to play for their country. It should not be that complex.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          That’s deep for a rugby blog

        • Brisneyland Local

          Damo I think you are bang on. He did not look comfortable at all.

        • Custard Taht

          I honestly thought it was one of his better pressers.

        • Geoffro

          Why,because he didnt mention momentum or how well they trained.

        • Custard Taht

          I thought he was rather controlled, and has been far worse in previous pressers.

        • Geoffro

          Cant agree,just thought he was being a petulant tool

        • Custard Taht

          He was that, but there pressers last year where he was just a sook and an obnoxious sore loser

    • Pedro

      On cheika, his petulant behaviour also reduces the average punter’s God given right to whinge about the ref etc. That’s our job, the team are supposed to be professional. By complaining so readily he poisons the well for the rest of us.

      • Mike Thompson

        It is just so bullshit, isn’t it? When has a victim mentality EVER improved anything?

        It just puts you in a horrible psychological state of powerlessness, in which your destiny is in other people’s hands. Yuck.

        Cheika’s Wallaby teams are either so massively over-hyped that they give away needless penalties or they are so limp that they barely react to the kickoff. So much for him being a good tournament coach.

        We had one excellent game recently, against NZ, and the energy levels were spot on. That, for me, that was the defining feature of that game – just how “perfectly up for it” we were. But in every other game, including the return Bled, and Fiji, and now Wales, we appear kinda limp to me. There just isn’t a spring to the step – a vitality. The kick-chase is always a good measure of intensity, and we just lope along.

        Such a bloody mess.

        And what a waste! This currently Wallaby side, when selected correctly, and coached correctly, should be a real handful for any other team in the word.

    • Richard Patterson

      Interesting thoughts – thank you.

      I thought Japan head coach Jamie Joseph made a very telling comment after their stunning victory over Ireland when he said “we’ve been planning for this game for several months. I expect Ireland only started preparing a week ago.”

      • Yowie

        “Yeah-nah you don’t need to plan for games against different opposition ya-know-what-I-mean. Rod Macqueen did a load of that stuff and what’s he ever achieved in Australian rugby?”

        • Richard Patterson

          Very strong point Yowie. It’s all about getting guys fired up. The rest is overrated.

  • onlinesideline

    the fact that he said it was planned in advance is a totally lame thing to say and if true totally lame thing to do. How on earth could he justify Foley over Toomua This was a vital match. Let Foley prove himslef in the lessor upcomig games. The truth is Cheika caves in selections when the pressure is on EVERY TIME. And that is felt by the players also. Im not sure if CLL was concussed but if not he and White should have had first crack. Cheika just refuses to string a backline together for more than one game. 4 YEARS and I dont think he has put the same backline together. This was CLL and Whites chance to be tested and Cheika caved. In my opinion they would have delivered. Its pathetic. No words. Now Cheika will switch back to CLL and White and expect them to deliver and bail him out. Guy has no idea. What more could CLL and White have done on the big stage to prove their potential and be given a shot ?

    • sambo6

      100 percent.

    • Patrick

      Let Foley prove himslef in the lessor upcomig games.

      I assume you mean in the NRC?

      • onlinesideline

        yep – cant words out so angry. I knew this would happen.

      • Bobas

        Just like they did with Hanigan, who was before last round leading the league in penalties.

    • Steve

      You’re definitely right in saying that he caves back to his ‘old faithful’ Foley/Genia halves pairing when the pressure is really on.

      I struggle to understand how he has attached any faith to that pairing in his little mind – it has never delivered for him consistently in the past.

      It’s just been 4 years of seeing a core team that doesn’t work, trying a random new combination for a few games, and then returning to the same core team.

      I’ve just never seen any coach fail so comprehensively to learn from experience, it genuinely interests me.

    • Antel

      Last week Genia had a good final 20 and he changed him in. To’omua has a strong half and he will change him in. But really should’ve stuck with White and Lealiifano or whoever were the halves prior to the tourney. Oh. Lol

    • Hoss

      Any one know the best product for removing faeces from a TV screen ? Lounge room looks like i had a chimp orgy last nite, but with no satisfying memories to go with this morning.

      • Brumby Runner

        Might be best Hoss if you don’t have any memories of last night. And I’m not just referring to the match.

      • Funk

        Now this really peaks my interest…I completely understand the compulsion to lob a beer bottle/glass, half eaten pie or similar thing that is at hand, but, is this faeces yours, maybe your pets? if it’s yours did you just drop you dacks and crap in your hand right there in front of your tv or did you walk to the toilet, crap then carry it back out and then throw it at the tv?? Or is the feaces from the poo that Foley was dishing up that was shown on your tv?

      • Yowie

        Any one know the best product for removing faeces from a TV screen?

        Shutting down Channel 9 might help. (Ba-dum-ding)

      • Geoffro

        Nothing on the screen but I think my dogs shit themselves the way I was carrying on

        • Yowie

          Haha, later in the evening my 6-year-old commented that he was pleased I had gotten over my “yelling-itis” disease.
          Little Mate also said:-
          – “his head looks funny” when Cheika was on screen; and
          – that he (Yowie Jnr) could do a better job of coaching the Wallabies.

        • Geoffro

          Did he ask why the guy with the funny eyes couldn’t dress himself properly ,lol

        • Yowie

          Haha no, but I wouldn’t put much stock in fashion tips from a little fellow who likes Spider Man pyjamas. On the other hand, coaching tips could be worth a try at this point.

        • onlinesideline

          In a cafe – full (quiet) chuckle

  • Who?

    Wow, crazy results in the NRC!!!
    Very disappointed both my teams lost their RWC pool matches this weekend (Ireland and the Wallabies). But if nothing else, it’s good for a competitive RWC. Some absolutely cracking games.
    .
    I’ll leave off commenting further on the games (for now)…
    EDIT: Except, as a continual referee hater, I have to note that I didn’t think Poite had a bad game… The TMO intervened too much, but what Poite called live on the field, he generally got right.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Agree. NRC was weird with the way it changed. Still too much emphasis on attack by most teams and I think it’ll be more defence the will defined the finals.

    • idiot savant

      I think the inconsistency in NRC results is a function of all sides (except the Force and Drua) using it to test positions and youth for the super rugby franchises. There was more pick and stick with top line players in previous seasons.

  • I Should be Coach

    Well the good news is that we will never see Foley again in gold.

    • Antel

      A couple of shocking passes; and a kick straight off a scrum win that goes to hand. Mustn’t want to run the cutter. Less pressure on him when defending.

      • I Should be Coach

        He is so bad it’s not even funny

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Bet we do

      • I Should be Coach

        Your probably right KRL. But I just can’t fathom what Ass clown sees in him. Worse 10 ever to put the gold on.

      • I Should be Coach

        Shiite

      • Dud Roodt

        Nah, I think Foley knew that was it. The look on his face was of dispair.

    • Brisneyland Local

      I second KRL. Cheika can’t help himself

    • Keith Butler

      Wouldn’t bet on it. Cheika has form. Expect to see Two Dads as well until Pettia is fit to play.

  • Human

    Who is that in the background of the top photo? Is there something afoot?

    • juswal

      I see the ghost of Steven Moore as well.

  • Crescent

    I would love to be able to say everything was Poite’s fault (or Skeen’s) – but that would be a lie.

    Firstly, credit to Wales. Impressive defensive effort when starved of possession in the second half, and left very few points on the field. They never gave up, it never felt like they lost self belief and they earned the chocolates.

    Now for my boys. A couple of key areas – Foley had an eminently forgettable game and might as well book a flight home if there were any brains in our setup. Left too many points on the field in the first half, when we really needed to maintain pressure to try and crack Wales.

    The number of times they took the ball to ground when a simple draw and pass was needed, failed to respect possession and support the ball carrier, or ran back into defenders when a straight, hard run would provide better pay in momentum and field position – we certainly aided and abetted our own downfall. The game was there for the taking with some smarter, basic play, and we were found wanting.

    Don’t want to get started on the Kerevi fend issue – the administrators have much to answer for, as it feels like they are actively working to dismantle the contest.

    Going to finish on a positive – at half time all my toys were out of the pram and I was in despair. By full time – edge of the seat, adrenaline pumping, desperately hoping for a heart breaker to be delivered to the Welsh – it really was a cracker. Following the Japan v Ireland cracker – the tournament is still offering plenty to love.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Well written mate

    • Frosty morning

      Wales were hungrier. I couldn’t believe our lack of intensity at the start – we conceded a soft turnover from the kickoff ffs and were behind after 40 seconds. That set the tone.

      • Dud Roodt

        Rory Arnold was close to worst on ground in that opening 15 mins.

        Then Foley came to the fore with his “hold my beer” moment

        • Patrick

          Which one?

        • Dud Roodt

          Minutes 15 through 44

      • idiot savant

        Agree Frosty. The Welsh were sent out by their coach with the right mind set.

        • Yowie

          Isn’t Cheika supposed to be the “fire up the team” guy? That and “running rugby based on fitness all the time” are pretty much his only party tricks.

    • Keith Butler

      The administrators made a rod for their own back with the Hodge decision. Now anything remotely near the head area is going to be punished with a penalty or worse irrespective of whether it’s legal or not. In the Kerevi incident he’s carrying the ball into contact under his right arm and raises his left arm so that he’s leading with his forearm which is dangerous territory. Pre Hodge he might have got away with it but now, not likely. Nothing wrong in my book with keeping the elbow down and using the shoulder to brace for the tackle but even that would probably be deemed illegal.

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        I’m pretty sure the idea of bracing down and leading into a tackle with the shoulder will always be OK. My reasoning is that the tackler dictates the collision point more than the carrier so bracing as long as you don’t lead with an elbow or forearm up will be ok

  • Antel

    Cheika’s selections and attitude should never have been accepted by RA.

    The test before the RWC he plays players who aren’t even in the RWC squad then comes unstuck by lack of combinations.

    Tupou is a mainstay of the squad and a positive impact off the bench leading up and then sits the first two games in the grandstand.

    Uelese, although playing well, isn’t featured pre-RWC and now plays both.

    What pressure does this put on young Petaia to start his career?

    And sitting there with your arms folded and giving short sarcastic answers is not the level expected of a national rep. Disgraceful – literally lacking grace.

    And lastly, Poite was ok, the TMO Ben Skeen has ruined many games for trying to feature on tv. He’s a tool.

    • juswal

      Skeen is a serial pest. But we have to take the officials out of the equation.

      • Andy

        Agree Juswal. Skeen is a horrible stain on the game.

        But there are plenty of narcissistic refs in world rugby and you have to remove them from the equation. The Wallabies failed at the selection table and didn’t turn up in the first half. That is solely what lost them the game.

  • Frosty morning

    I’ve never coached a rugby team so I’ve always been reluctant to criticise those that do as I’ve never walked in their shoes. But I do have a lot of experience at being a human being, so I can say this with authority…. after seeing Cheika’s post match performance he is nothing more than an arrogant, petulant, graceless little shit. He is a shocking ambassador for our team, our game and our country. I can handle losing. I can handle disagreeing with selections and tactics. I can handle coaches, players and officials making mistakes. But I can’t stand the sheer attitude of this bloke. He is a disgrace and an embarrassment.

    • idiot savant

      Almost matched by Kearns in the commentary booth….

      • Keith Butler

        Kearns is a fool, great player but a myopic fool.

    • Richard Osborne

      Cheika – Kyrios’ other father

  • IIPA

    I don’t have a huge issue with the Kerevi penalty as such. That style of fend, often featuring Fijian born players has crept a bit too much into the game. But I don’t think it was a particularly bad example and if missed live in game then that should have been the end of it…..so….

    My issue is with Skeen. This bloke should’ve been sent back to reffing Invercargill sheep shaggers 4ths after ruining the first few weeks of Super Rugby last year with his constant “chik chik”.

    Both his interruptions of this game were totally unnecessary. Get your nasally effin voice off my tv screen !!!

    Ok that feels better.

    Well played Wales. Proud of the fight WBs showed. Front row and MK and DHP at the back were outstanding. Hooper likewise and Poey played a very good match without too many highlight reel moments.

    • nmpcart

      Agree on the Kerevi fend – at the time I called it as leading with the elbow, on review it wasn’t quite that bad but still shouldn’t have happened. Far more damaging from Kerevi was his inability/unwillingness to pass, just taking the ‘big kid in juniors’ approach of running through everyone. If he had passed on a couple of occasions the Wallabies were in – dumb play and unfortunately he limits the team with that. It worked in SR but in tests he is found out against strong defences.

      How many times did JOC get the ball? Hardly any. If you are going to have Kerevi as solely a crash ball runner then crash it up and quickly get it back, not hang on and fight the defenders so that the ball never gets any further.

      Toomua was a revelation when he came on – really strong running and then he would pass – might want to explain this new move to Kerevi ‘Hey Samu, I got this thing off YouTube, it’s called a pass, you should try it’. Toomua was so good he should be dropped from the team for future games as it makes other players look bad – Cheika logic.

      Tackling technique – I know Rory Arnold is a tall man but how many arms around the throat tackles does he have to do before he realises it is high?

      • idiot savant

        Actually JOC got the ball a bit because he spent a lot of time at inside centre and Kerevi did most of his holding on in the 13 channel which is more understandable. Turnovers out wide can hurt you, particularly when you have a slow winger and the opposition has a speedy winger.

      • Keith Butler

        Could point about the Arnold tackle. Lots of players do it though particularly at the rolling maul or the ruck clear out. Hardly ever pinged though.

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Skeen is an embarresment. He really needs to be pulled in. I wonder though how much of it is due to directions from World Rugby after their comment on referred though

      • IIPA

        No doubt he saw it as an excuse to butt in… I thought WR had clarified the role of the TMO was to draw the on field ref’s attention to anything he deemed a possible act of foul play and then basically show the angles / replays as requested. Just like in Super rugby however Skeen took it upon himself to voice opinions unsolicited..

        Really felt there was a language barrier with Poite who seemed uncomfortable with the whole thing and it is had been Gardner, Owens, Barnes they might have told him to sod off. I do look forward to the day a ref tells a TMO to get back in his box.

        • Haz

          Barnes has done it a few times

          Him going ‘There’s nothing to see here is there’ to the TMO was my favourite.

  • Andy

    Not a Foley hater by any stretch and I do think he gets a hard time from the crowd but he really shouldn’t have been anywhere near this team on form. And the result showed it. He has absolutely lost all confidence and is failing at things he used to be good at. How he could be selected “cold” for the biggest game is baffling. It’s actually not fair on him to be honest

    • Geoffro

      look on his face after being subbed.hes broken

      • Dud Roodt

        Yeah I saw that too. I think he saw that as potentially his last time in a gold jersey (which it should be).
        Feel sorry for the bloke – but fuck me he was bad.

      • Andy

        I know. He looks finished for the time being. Moving to Japan and starting afresh is probably the best thing for his career. Play in a different environment with some quality coaches.

  • idiot savant

    Last week I defended Foleys selection on the grounds that all our five eights were ordinary and that Foley had big game and RWC experience. I did wonder if the other selectors who see them all train had agreed with the selection or if it was a ‘Captain’s call’ by Cheika.

    I was perplexed by what I saw in terms of game plan. Foley’s strength is as a runner – he’s very quick over 3 metres and has for most of his career stood flat with the aim of getting his shoulders over the gain line and giving off short passes to other runners. Against Wales he stood deep and threw long passes which has always been a weakness of his. So was this the game plan to combat the Welsh line speed or did Foley go off reservation? When Toomua came on he stood flat and threw short passes. Go figure?

    While Hooper’s captaincy is improving, I was disappointed by his late hit on Biggar. Not only did he risk being given a yellow card and leaving his team one man down, is this the kind of leadership you expect from a captain. A very deliberate cynical late hit that was not going to effect the play? Is that leading by example?

    • Yowie

      I did wonder if the other selectors who see them all train had agreed with the selection or if it was a ‘Captain’s call’ by Cheika.

      I wonder if there were some phone calls between the other 2 selectors and Rugby Australia where these sentences were uttered:- “f*ck it, let him stew in his own juice and own this one. At least we’ll probably save some per-match payments.”

  • Dud Roodt

    I’m not going to be saying anything anyone already hasn’t, but for what it’s worth;

    – That should be Foley’s last game ever in a gold jersey. He should discover an injury he’s suffering from, send him home, and bring someone competent in. That might be the worst 45min stint in a gold jersey I’ve ever seen

    – Rory Arnold seemed to completely forget that he is capable of bending at the waist for the first 20 mins of that game. This was back to the bad old Rory I thought he’d got rid of

    – the refereeing was atrocious. But we all know that

    – I’ve been a long time Cheika apologist but I am now firmly in the camp that the way he behaved after the game was terrible and incredibly unbecoming of a national coach. His selection of Foley (I’m assuming the other selectors wouldn’t have – but who knows) was a cluster fuck of epic proportions. To think a player so horrifically out of form can play his way into form in the biggest match of the biggest tournament a player will ever play in is just plain old retarded

    – Wales were the better team for more of the game and won

    – I really have no idea why, when we were consistently pounding their line and scored off it – we didn’t get straight back there and do it again?

    • Brumby Runner

      On Cheika, DR, his poor selections and inability to put a team together and his petulant behaviour after losses have been consistent features of his tenure since the last RWC. It has just taken a lot of people a lot of time to recognise his reality.

  • Mike Thompson

    Foley effectively cost us the game with his kicking. Talk about not in the right headspace. i was at a pub to watch the game and when he was taken off, there was a loud cheer. That felt pretty sad. He’s a player who has tried his best over a long period. He should never have been put in that situation.

    Skeen cost us the game.

    Selections cost us the game:
    – why is Beale even on the bench? Why isn’t he in Australia watching.
    – Pooper doesn’t work
    – Genia is not as good as White. He slows everything down by 10%. Then he takes one or two steps before passing. The attack is simply more laboured.
    – did I mentioned that Foley cost us the game.
    The energy is not there. The kick chase was lopping. The re-alignment was shuffling.

    DHP was good at fullback. Solid under the high ball and probing in attack.

    The scrum was good. Thier tighhead was blatently boring in.

    The lineout was very good.

    The exits were shakey.

    The attack really made easy progress against the Welsh defence. Except we’d drop the ball or kick it away. I guess I’m saying the structure and method is good.

    Defence was solid, particularly on our line, but equally it is not as if the Welsh tested it much.

    We have virtually no turnover game – even with Pocock out there. Pocock is a one trick pony to some extent – it is a hell of a trick – but it isn’t working with the current interpretations. He simply has to be used for impact. Surely.

    Leadership from Hooper is getting better all the time. Time in the job. Except … I as screaming at them to not take those 3 points at the end. We were so on top. And the 3 points didn’t get us in front. Sigh.

    At international level, Cheika has been an abject failure. He has at his disposal a good enough team to worry any team in the world. A steady world ranking of #6 is just too low for the talent he has available. Compare the team he produces with the marvelous efficiency of the Japanese team. The precision. The clear headedness. The clear plan. The cleverness.

    Cheika’s Wallabies team is bumbing, stupid, clumsy, and either too high in energy or two low. The whole thing is just a mess. And he has a victim mentality. When has that EVER worked to improve things.

    Wales were a lot more ordinary than I had expected. Yeah, I known, I know, they beat us. But I had expected them to be much much more formadable.

    • Geoffro

      Well,whichever way you look at it , more changes will be rung.One thing I’d do is swap JOC and Kerevi

      • Brumby Runner

        I’d go one step further. JOC to 12, yes, but TK returns to 13 and Kerevi to the wing.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          I’d like to see that too

        • Patrick

          Would be a handy way to get around the lack of an actual winger, too.

        • Patrick

          Would be a handy way to get around the lack of an actual winger, too.

        • onlinesideline

          bloody hell – never thought of that

        • Sri Ranas

          Agree. Kerevi doesnt pass and on the wing doesnt need to pass!

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      I think Wales played as much as they needed to

      • Geoffro

        Interesting.There must be plenty here who thought we were going to run over the top of them ,same as me, going into the last quarter but they consolidated pretty well

    • disqus_NMX

      “Pocock is a one trick pony” – wash your mouth out!

  • A Dingo Stole My Rugby

    I’d like to apologise to everyone for the hysterical, fact-free rantings by Kearns, his apprentice (Hoiles) and Cheika in response to their perceived slights against the Australian team last night. Objective? I don’t think so.

    I’ve come to expect it of Kearns, who constantly whinges about the refereeing from whistle to whistle, especially when his team is behind.

    But to make Stuart Barnes look and sound like the voice of reason and balance is some effort.

    The cowardly “robbed by the ref” angle should never be used to excuse our shortcomings, and especially not our transgressions. Sure there were some decisions that might have gone either way, but we benefited from some too.

    In World Rugby parlance, I saw nothing ‘clear and obvious’ to exonerate Kerevi, and to compare it to Hodge’s tackle is just plain wrong. At no point was there contact by the tackler to Kerevi’s head – and that’s just where the inconsistency starts.

    Same for the intercept – maybe he was offside, maybe he wasn’t – nothing ‘clear and obvious’, so play on.

    And I’m far from convinced that we had scrum ascendancy – watching Kepu have his head shoved up his arse in consecutive scrums tended to undermine that view.

    I am embarrassed that we have come out overnight sounding like a nation of whingers and sore losers.

    But I’m relieved that the bloke who was apparently shortlisted for the RA CEO job isn’t inside the tent, royally screwing our game through his self-interest and excuse-making.

    Wales was the better team last night. Outplayed, out-thought, out-coached.

    • Dud Roodt

      While I agree 100% on Kearns – I have to disagree on your assessment of Hoiles. I thought he was very measured. I was fucking ropable with the Kerevi call, not least of which because I think they are destroying the game with this shit, but the fact it took 5 fucking minutes to come to a decision is fucking outrageous, so I can understand why an ex international player is pissed off with it too. And he wasn’t alone.

      And then to not even look ONCE at Davies’ try to see if potentially he was offside – not fucking once. But let’s look again a million times at a very regulation hit up by Kerevi. Crazy.

      In my opinion, the players are shell shocked by the rules they’ve had to come to terms with (and we all know the rules and laws will change another 50 times over the next 12 months) – and they should all get together and strike for change. It’s bullshit what this game is becoming.

      There is a happy medium between NRL where almost every tackle there’s contact with the head, and what rugby is now.

  • Pedro
  • Missing Link

    what a load of shit, that’s pretty much our tournament stuffed. we’re going to have to play England in the quarters unless either Fiji pulls a miracle win on wales or somehow argentina and france get over england.

    frustrating match for us as always…we did a few silly things but there were also a few ref howlers against us that resulted in points for Wales. Webb was offside 3 times, he waited until Poite turned his back on the defensive line and shot out to make the intercept. he stuffed up twice and got lucky once, not even a TMO review of the try???? Second, Kerevi’s fend. He should have probably not done it and allowed his head to crash into patchell’s shoulder, that’s the trouble with these laws, they can be exploited and sadly I don’t think anything will be done unless another team exploits the laws against NZ, then there will be hell to pay. Third, we won the scrum, the ball was at the no.8’s feet, instead of calling “use it”, Poite gives us a penalty, then turns around because our front row collapse, how fucking pedantic! Fourth, Beale’s pass to Salakaia-Loto on the wing was not forward. That’s at least 10 points gifted in Wales favour.

    also well done to Japan for their upset against Ireland, never saw that coming!

    • Brumby Runner

      I really think it would have been futile to review the potential off side by Davies that earned him the try. The referee on the ground is sole judge of when the ball is in play from the ruck. No-one else, including the TMO or either of the touch judges, can say what is in Poite’s head as far as he judges “play on”. Any number of replays would still hinge on Poite’s thinking. It is not a black and white situation.

      • Cornchips

        It’s not black and white no, I actually don’t care too much about the outcome unless it was blatant. The issue for me is that it wasn’t looked at at all.

    • Keith Butler

      Just seen a screen shot of the incident on the other thread. Looks pretty conclusive. Genia has the ball standing up, so no issue with still being part of the ruck, and Davies is clearly onside. Just Genia’s laboured delivery and well read by the Welshman.

  • Brisneyland Local

    Well holy fucking shit batman! I know everyone on this site knows I think Foley is a useless sod. But by god did I never expect him to actually come out and pants himself so badly in front of the world. He was that bad that even Cheika dragged him. OMG. Here we go off the long run up.
    – Firstly and most importantly congratulations to Wales. They wanted. They were smart, efficient and played what was in front of them. Congrats. They deserved it.
    – Foley blew dog. Totally and utterly shite. Man it was the difference between day and light when Two cows came on.
    – Methuselah. He is not a finisher. Shouldn’t be in the team. I would have had Taniela in like Flynn.
    – Cheika as a total ass clown. That post game press conference was a disgrace. Ok some of the Referumps decisions were crap. Got it. But to just whinge and carry on like an arrogant tool is really an embarrassment to our nation.
    – Yes Romain Poite made some dumb decisions. Over all I thought he let the game flow reasonably evenly. It was Skeen’s constant interruption and stupid shit that concerned me. The Kerevi decision was not a penalty. But it is obvious that that is where WR are trying to steer this. They are being told to look for this and stamp on it.
    – We screwed ourselves with selections before the game started. The first half cost us badly, and we couldn’t recover. We can not blame this loss on the referump. We own this. More to the point, Cheika owns this! I will be so glad when the Cheika era is finally over. I feel sorry for the number of players whose careers he has totally screwed over.
    – There were some positives though. The line out was good. The scrum was above average. When Two Cows came on we started to move forward.
    Overall gents, I said we would go down by 7 and I was close. The game played out as we expected. The only thing that caught me unawares was Cheika dragging spanners at the 44 min mark. I would never have imagined that happening before. Well enough of me ranting and raving. Over to you GAGR’s

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Pfffft I’ve seen better rants mate.
      I disagree on Kerevi. By all means protect yourself and the ball by tucking in and hitting up with the shoulder but if you raise your forearm and it connects above the shoulder then automatic penalty. Not often ruled on which I think is the real issue. If you want to fend then an open hand is the way to do it.
      I actually feel for spanners. Yeah he was crap but why give him 4 more minutes in the 2nd half. What the hell was he going to achieve in 4 minutes? Either give him enough time, or pull him at half time.
      TBH I was more concerned with the lack of pace at the back which was shown up, Kerevi forgetting to know he’s allowed to pass and Koroibete being contained quite easily. Only one real winger and once he was contained there’s not a lot else on offer.

      • Brisneyland Local

        I thought Kerevi was unlucky because it hit is chest first then slid up as the player slid down. But agree it should be a better fend.
        Yep we always knew Foley was going to be dog poo. And he was. That one rests with Cheika.
        Lack of pace is a serious problem. I dont know if Kerevi has forgotten how to pass or was told not to. It happened that often.

      • Cornchips

        What do you mean Kerevi forgot he was allowed to pass, he never knew in the first place.

        • Geoffro

          And there you have it.He is not a second five at this level.Dynamic ball carrier but not a 12

      • David Creagh

        I would put Spanners on the next plan home. He played badly, his confidence will be completely shot. Only useful for holding a tacking bag from here on it and there are more deserving people of that.

    • disqus_NMX

      Poite is a Toite, but Ass Clown is an even bigger Toite. (Have I got my pronunciation right?)

      • Geoffro

        Goldmember:
        Dr. Evil, we still have the ultimate insurance policy. May I present to you, the very sexual, the very toite, Austin Power’s fahza.

  • Hoss

    Well good morning team,

    My lounge room looks like a frat house after party today – reflects my rugby soul.

    Not much i can add that hasn’t been covered elsewhere. I’d love to be able to point the fingers of blame in several external directions, but history will show we were the masters of our own demise – AGAIN.

    Wales, well done. They stayed in the scrap and let us implode and picked at the carcass of Australian Rugby. World Champions they most certainly will not be, but worthy winners last night none-he-less.

    As for Spanners. Man to man, i feel sorry for the guy. He looked broken on the pine last nite and he really shouldn’t have been placed in the position at all – ie, not selected to begin with. I wont rake over old coals, but old Nard shouldn’t have been on the 31, let alone the XV and he will cop it from all and sundry and what will be his last ever test for the Wallabies. When your forwards have set piece dominance, provide good front foot pill, get through Wales D fairly easily and your 10 plays like Spanners did, well, he’s just not up to it and there is a body of work from 2016- now that shows he is not up to standard, every body knows it, the look from Spanners last nite shows he knows it, but Mr Segall……..

    The cup is not over.There will be twists and turns to come, but we have put ourselves into a likely collision course with England and if by some miracle we get that QF win then a likely Ireland / Nearlies in a SF (i know, but its my dream).

    The most frustrating thing for me continues to be – we are not that far off as evidenced by the second half efforts, but give a tier 1 nation a 15 point lead then you are trying to jog in quicksand from there on in.

    • Missing Link

      Have to admit, I was concerned when we were 10-0 down, even though we brought it back to 10-5, a 10 point head start in a test is most likely game over.

      • Hoss

        I look at key games over the past 5-6 years mate and the tone has been set early.

        2013 Game 3 v BIL – we spill the kick-off
        2015 RWC SF v The Nearlies – kick-out on the full
        2019 RWC Pool play v Wales – concede 3 points in under a minute

        None of these three examples were insurmountable but all were pointers the the mental frailties that lurk in the shadows of the Wallabies.

        The era of the Genias, Beale, Foley, Coopers, Hooper etc will be punctuated with just that. Could have been something special, but mentally fragile when it mattered most.

        Plenty of flash, not enough steel.

        • Andy

          Beale has as much substance as a pensioners crap. Id love to see a stat on how often he turns over the ball on a kick return.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Mate I agree, the team needs more work on their mental fitness than they do on their physical fitness. I just don’t think the current setup sees that as something important

    • disqus_NMX

      I have a vague recollection from many years ago, of thinking Spanners was a good player. Is my memory that bad, or has it truely been just years of Ass Clown’s coaching him that turned him to shit?

      • Hoss

        Funny you should say that mate and i may be over simplifying a tad but i have been thinking same today. But when he went from RWC 15 straight to a season in Japan, straight back into SR his form has deteriorated rapidly. Certainly 2018 / 19 his domestic form has been terrible and that’s being polite.

        Last nite was a long time in the making and it would be a shame to outweigh his 2015 efforts.

        PS – you see the comments from QC re Cheika and his (QC’s) 2019 RWC chances – brutally frank and actually very insightful.

        • disqus_NMX

          Nah, where did you see the QC comments? Got a link?

        • Hoss

          I’ve been devouring every word about Rugby since RWC kick-off and stumbled over this.

          I have even more respect for the guy now and his comments are, well, illuminating.

          Enjoy

          https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/rugbyunion/article-7516243/Rugby-World-Cup-2019-Cooper-faced-Cipriani-rugbys-distrust-mavericks.html

        • disqus_NMX

          Thanks! Yep, such a shame, one of the most exciting ever Wallabies player lost due to stubborn egg head Ass Clown. Would we have beaten Wales last night if QC was at 10?!!!

        • Bernie Chan

          Insightful piece…thanks Hoss. Link was the only coach willing to say to his players “play what’s in front of you…”. Many know that at the Reds under Link, when the coaches often found Genia and QC running plays in practice that were not part of the planned session…but let them have some freedom.

        • Hoss

          There’s another version of the same interview but i am buggered if I can find it again where QC actually says & i quote ” i knew when Michael Cheika survived the 2018 season review my world cup chances had gone’

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          I’m with you mate. I think he really did grow up and with the right coach he would have starred. Still needs to work on a bit but I get the impression he’s actually a really nice guy and would have done well

  • Bobas

    “If you want to play touch, go play basketball” – Samu Kerevi

    Wow, wait ’til that hits the TFA headquarters at Moore Park, when the plug the fax machine back in when summer comp starts back up at the end of October.

  • Pedro
    • Yowie

      Bwahahaha gold.

  • muppet

    A counter-ruck is a thing of beauty. I’m old enough to remember when we used to do them well too.

  • Richard Patterson

    I think what is most disappointing about Michael Cheika is that the battle rugby in Australia faces versus the heavily covered NRL and AFL codes is well documented. It’s a battle rugby has lived with forever, and will continue to face in earnest. The fact that this time of the year coincides with NRL and AFL play-offs and Grand Finals only adds to the competitive battles. Rugby should be using this World Cup tournament as an outstanding opportunity to showcase itself to not only the rugby fan, but the marginal Australian sports fan as well. The open-minded parent. The interested kids who’ll happily align themselves with whatever sport promotes itself in a clever, appealing manner. Everyone has a role to play – in particular high-profile personnel like head Wallaby coach Michael Cheika.

    Given all that backdrop, Michael Cheika then intentionally chose to use an opportunity like a post-game press-conference when all the world is watching to behave the way he did. He intentionally chose to disrespect all the media training he would have received, all the RA reminders about promoting the sport, and all the messages to RA sponsors who help keep the sport functioning. When reminded of his obligations to these matters, Cheika would have likely reminded anyone courageous enough to ask of his disregard for such matters. They’d be the standard “I’m here to win rugby matches mate — not sit here putting on an image for the sport. Other people do that stuff — that’s not my job”. I am afraid Michael, I believe you are wrong. It is your job to represent the sport in a manner that win, lose or draw people are proud to be associated with it, and makes others want to involve themselves with it. Don’t serve up all the “the competitive landscape is so hard here” rhetoric, then take a very high-profile opportunity to behave poorly. Isn’t it eiether one, or the other?

    The next promising young Australian schoolboy player signed to an NRL club will leave me wondering how that could have been avoided. One hopes Rugby Australia ask themselves the same question. I wonder if Michael Cheika will too.

    • Brisneyland Local

      Really good points. RA have to reap what they sowed. They created this beast, they own the problem. Ass Clown doesnt see anything wrong with his behaviour, let alone his game plan or his selections. It is always someone elses fault.

  • disqus_NMX

    Watching the Wallabies has become weird for me. I want them to win. And yet, want them to lose so that we get rid of Ass Clown. Makes for a very detached and chilled watching experience. From that perspective, it was a great game to watch last night. Some skill to enjoy, and some fuck ups to laugh at.

  • GeorgiaSatellite

    Not a lot to add to all that’s been said here, but I can add fuel to the “Cheika is a tool” narrative.
    If he hadn’t shot his mouth off last week about never having referred anyone to the judiciary, I would have been most interested to refer the hit on Naisarani by (I think) Adams. The Welsh #11. To me, it looked absolutely identical to Hodge’s hit last week in terms of ‘attacking player leading with head’, ‘questionable deployment of arms by tackler’ etc. Now, I wouldn’t have suspended Hodge for that, but there’s a definitely lack of consistency, IMO.
    Now we can’t test that fairness outside of the match conditions. Thanks maaaaaaaaate.

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    Thanks Nathan,
    What a weekend. A high of Japan over Ireland followed by the low of this loss. Nothing to say that hasn’t been said before and enough Kiwi hate from some without me adding to it. I do agree that the NZ TMO is out of his depth and shouldn’t do that job. TBH I’m not that surprised, I always thought the winner of the 6N would be tough.
    Wasn’t that Japan win fantastic? Such a great result. Ireland will keep going but they do seem to have peaked a year too early.
    NRC is weird. I do agree with some that it’s probably been used too much for Super trials and that’s creating the Inconsistency.

Rugby
@NathW1997

Loved rugby since the day I could remember, got the nickname Footy to show that, I watch Matt Dunning's dropkick every night before going to bed

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