Storms throughout the Brisbane day ensured uncertainty around crowd size but also what we could expect come game time. Clear skies by kick off, and the fantastic Suncorp Surface was good to go for another intense Nelson Mandela Challenge was sure to take place.
3rd minute – Aussies snagged an early turn over and looked to attack by spreading wide, but a loose carry saw the Boks regain possession and spread it wide where Etzebeth sent Habana away for a run before Genia took down Mohoje in a cracker. Eventually the Boks were able to continue to take the ball forward before Whiteley powered over for his team’s first try.
12th - Australia awarded a scrum penalty via an Etzebeth loose arm and Foley is successful with the shot.
18th – Folau outjumps Habana for a misplaced Bok bomb and off loaded to Cooper who set Kerevi away down the sideline. Samu passed back to Quade who set up a quick phase ball and the ball was spread wide to Foley who’s pass to countless Wallaby support runners was intercepted by Adriaan Strauss who set the play down field for Johan Goosen to follow through a well-placed kick to score under the posts.
27th – The Aussies shunned a number of penalty shot options following repeated infringements by the Boks. A quick throw in to Douglas at the front saw Hodge power his way close to the line before Genia went back to the sideline where Adam Coleman was waiting for the pass to score his first test try.
35th - Folau took another kick and off-loaded to Quade who flicked it magically to Kerevi who charged down the field, perhaps ignoring support on the outside. The Boks were penalised from the next play and Foley kicked the penalty.
Half time = 14-13 to South Africa
42nd – Foley kicks a penalty following a lovely inside pass from Quade to Kerevi was stopped by the Boks and Etzebeth was yellow carded for yet another Bok penalty in the 22m.
62nd– After countless Wallaby charges in close around the ruck, and some solid Bok defence, Foley took the first receiver’s position and straightened the attack well to dummy over and score after 18 phases of attack.
64th– Morne Steyne kicked a penalty goal following a Wallaby infringement at the ruck.
- A propensity for Wallaby players to put the ball on the boot while attacking. Perhaps a tactic to take advantage of the greasy surface.
- Wallabies working well off the line in defence with Hodge in particular tackling around 10/12 working well.
- Boks doing very well at the breakdown either turning it over or slowing it down at the maul.
- Hodge kicking for touch was a revelation. We actually made significant metres!
- Genia showing his class across the park. Let alone the try saving tackle, but fantastic clearing kicks, clever attacking options and excellent pressure around the ruck, maul and scrum.
- The second half really started to loosen up with both teams looking to challenge the other team with some creative play.
- Michael Hooper was back to aggressive best at the ruck and at the tackle which makes you consider that his form in the last couple of tests was more because the All Blacks were able to nullify him completely.
- Foley’s five from five with the boot was very decisive
- The Boks started with great speed and put the pressure on the Wallabies early but couldn’t maintain it throughout the game.
- The Wallabies have now won 2 from 8 tests under Nigel Owens.
The game was one well below the standard we would expect in an All Black encounter but Australia should be proud of their first win since the RWC Semi-Final last year. Quade at 10, and particularly in combination with Genia, has definitely seen greater intent in the team’s attack, but finishing remains a concern as you get the feeling that there were points left on the field
Australia retain the Nelson Mandela Plate and will take on the Pumas in Perth next week, whilst the Boks head to Christchurch to face New Zealand.
The Game Changer
It was the Wallaby’s composed play in the 2nd half that culminated with the try to Bernard Foley with just a quarter of the game to go that seemed the moment that slowed the Boks and solidified the Wallabies.
The G&GR MOTM
Some solid performances by both teams but Will Genia was the man who made the most impact on his team’s performance with a classy and composed performance across the park. .
Rookies Reece Hodge and Adam Coleman were both extremely impressive with their positive impacts across the game and big match plays. Michael Hooper was edging closer to his best and was named the official player of the match. Bok fullback Johan Goosen was the best for the visitors.
Score & Scorers
Tries: Adam Coleman, Bernard Foley
Conversions: Bernard Foley 2
Penalties: Bernard Foley 3
Tries: Warren Whiteley, Johan Goosen
Conversions: Elton Jantjies 2
Penalties: Morne Steyne
Cards & citings
41st minute – Eben Etzebeth