Wallabies leave it late to put away Italy - Green and Gold Rugby
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Wallabies leave it late to put away Italy

Wallabies leave it late to put away Italy

The Wallabies left it until the last 5 minutes to wrap up a 40 – 27 win over the Azzuri. Two late tries secured a victory, after the Italians were only trailing by only 1 point, and another upset had looked a distinct possibility.

 

The Match

Afternoon rugby returned to Suncorp, with the Azurri looking to get their first win over Australia, and the Wallabies looking to erase the memories of last weeks upset loss to the Scots.

Mick Byrne, Mario Ledesma & Michael Cheika oversee the scrum practice

Mick Byrne, Mario Ledesma & Michael Cheika oversee the scrum practice

Wallabies started with a string of handling errors which put them under pressure, and were lucky not to be down 10-0, after a penalty goal to Tommaso Allan, and then what looked like a try to lock Dean Budd was disallowed by the TMO when Giovanbattista Venditti was adjudged to have gone into touch while still in contact with the ball via his fingertip.

TMO disallowed this Italian try

Disaster averted, a quick tap from Genia from a scrum free kick, allowed Horne to draw 2 defenders to put Naivalu into space. ‘Super-Sefa’ showed his speed to burn the opposition to score a good try. A Deliberate knockdown from Italy, was lucky not to result in a yellow card. From the resulting penalty, a break from Dane Haylett-Petty off inside ball from Foley drove deep into the Italian half.  Playing a penalty advantage for Genia being taken out, the ball was spread wide for Folau to score in the corner.

Sefa Naivalu scored the first try with some blistering pace, and backed up for a double before going off with an ankle injury

Sefa Naivalu scored the first try with some blistering pace, and backed up for a double before going off with an ankle injury

Michael Hooper then made a break down one wing, before Karmichael Hunt threw a long cut-out pass to put Israel Folau in untouched for his second try. The try completed a triple-double for Folau, being the first person to score 2 tries in 3 consecutive games.

Number 1, Israel Folau scores a double for the third week in a row. The first person to do so.

Number 1, Israel Folau scores a double for the third week in a row. The first person to do so.

At 21-6 it looked like the flood-gates were about to open, the Italians hit back with a try to Michele Campagnaro who showed great speed to beat the diving Naivalu, after an offload from winger Giovanbattista Venditti, to go into the break trailing by 21- 13.

Sefa Naivalu can not stop Campagnaro from scoring

After the break, Foley went close to scoring, before a few phases later he was involved again with a between the legs pass, allowing Hunt to throw another cut-out pass for Naivalu to score his second.

A good break from Genia, came to nothing after his pass to Dane Haylett-Petty in support went high into touch. Shortly after, Folau opted for a quick line out throw 5 metres out from his own line which was knocked on. The Italians dominated for the next 10 minutes, turning the pressure from their scrum into a try to Edoardo Padovani, after Haylet-Petty could not hang-on to a cross-field kick.

Dane Haylett-Petty spills a cross-field kick

A intercept try to Tommaso Benvenuti bought the Italians to within 1 point of the Australians, and there were a lot of nervous faces around the ground.

With 10 minutes to go, the Australians finally got some attacking field position. Haylet-Petty went close, but Cooper could not hang on to a short pass from Genia. From the ensuing scrum Toby Smith was yellow carded, and upset seemed likely. The Italians could not capitalize though, and after Bram Steyn was yellow carded for a deliberate foul, Bernard Foley dummied and stepped and reached out to score the match-winner. Reece Hodge added more respectability with a long-range try after the siren.

Reece Hodge scores a last minute try

Reece Hodge scores a last minute try


The Game Changer

From the 46th minute onwards, a series of handling errors and/or poor decisions regarding ball security, allowed the Italians back into the game with 2 tries. The situation was compounded by Naivalu going off injured, and the Wallaby scrum being dominated by the Italians

The G&GR MOTM

Israel Folau and Sefa Naivalu were rewarded with 2 tries each, Karmichael Hunt threw some good long passes, and added physicality to midfield defence. But the official GAGR MOTM goes to Adam Coleman.

Wallaby watch

Sefa Naivalu looks to be out for 6-7 weeks after scans on his ankle. Jack Dempsey made his debut to become Wallaby #909


The Details

Crowd: 21,849

Score & Scorers

Australia: 40
Tries: Naivalu 2, Folau 2, Foley, Hodge
Conversions: Foley 5
Penalties:
Italy: 27
Tries: Campagnaro, Padovani, Benevenut
Conversions: Allan 3
Penalties: Allan 3

Cards & citings

73rd Minute – Toby Smith (Australia)

75th Minute – Bram Steyn (Italy)

Photo Credit: Stephen Tremain

  • HJ Nelson
  • Seaweed

    2 comments. Says it all really. Hope G&GR can keep it up with the declining interest/traffic.

    On a brighter note, what a cracker across the Tasman. Sat down and watched that with my boy and we … remembered what it was like that day in 2015 when we sat at Twickers and watched the mob tear the red and white to pieces. And all while singing Waltzing Matilda. And later on when they’d lost hope we started singing Swing Low to ‘em. Ah, … memories. And what a try from the Lions and what a performance from the Darkness. Reminds me why I watch this game.

    Didn’t watch the other one, knew what would happen there, sounds like it ran to script. Need a shake up here lads, top to bottom. As Bob might have put it we need some “Music in the cafes at night and revolution in the air.”

    I loved what Check did with the Tahs in ’14. Sensational. Never had so much fun. But everyone has moved on, worked it out, yada, yada, yada. That’s why the Force were our bogie team. As long as you played us right we could not execute. But I love the Force, so that’s ok. But England 3-0 at home? Oh dear me. Oh dear.

    Yep. Time to move on. Nothing to see here …

    • Huw Tindall

      Fair go mate we were all posting on the game preview article as there wasnt a match review up until today! The forums have been going off this week with all the supporters showing they actually give a shit about Aussie rugby.

      Do agree with your sentiment re Cheika and the ’14 Tahs. Would like to see some evolution.

    • Bobas

      It was just the perfect storm of commitments from the authors this week, hence it being posted a day late.
      The only way I can tell traffic without asking gagger himself is soundcloud views and weve been slowly growing to new heights there. So hopefully good news for the front page.
      If you want edgier up to the minute stuff join the gagr forum.

  • Bobas

    A late one but a good one. Cheers for this HJ.
    I’m glad we agreed on the MOTM

    • HJ Nelson

      I couldn’t separate them, but thought I should agree with the official MOTM :)

      • Bobas

        So your saying ‘quick ball Folau’ got a watch for your mention?

        • HJ Nelson

          As far as I am concerned GAGR is the only Official source, and you posted first :)

    • Waz_dog

      Hunt was MOTM for mine – immense.

  • Arty

    The initial 15 minutes or so was deplorable. So much wrong the Wallabies.
    Players such as Moore and Genia are not a solution, Sio done yet again, too light on in the back row.
    Arnold did not impress in this game, Timani also underplayed his role, might as bring back higgers.
    Why can’t DHP catch. He gets paid to catch. Another inconsistant game from him.
    Unfortunately Foley is our best 10, Cooper cannot be trusted as a starter and will not tackle.
    Positives were Folau again, SN, Hooper, Coleman and Hunt. But no-one really nailed it.
    For heavens sake we were playing Italy at home.
    I felt ill leaving the stadium last week against the Scots, a long three hour train home, and feel little better now.

    • McWarren

      Cooper like Foley defends on the wing so I’m not that’s a legit excuse to keep Foley anymore. I’d start Cooper at 10, but word has it Cheika’s got his eye on a 4th grade lock at Randwick cause he’s a top bloke who plays with passion. Seriously though the first Bled test? Of course he’ll pick Cooper, you wouldn’t want Bernard to take the post game flak.

      • Andy

        Whatever your opinion may be on either of them I hope to god one of them steps up the in the next couple of weeks. Not just for the Wallabies sake but their own. They need to put pressure on each other in order to get better and not one of them is really doing that.

    • Andy

      Agree with the salient points. Simply, for every good thing a player did he did 2 bad things. Just non consistency. Our game management was really poor as well.

      When the defence rushes up you need to play narrow. That’s what they probably should have been doing in the first 20 minutes. That would have made the Italians defensive structure change and allowed space further out later in the game.

    • Missing Link

      I thought Timani had an alright game, took the ball across the gain line and made tackles. It wasn’t a flashy game but he got through some work.

    • jamie

      Foley can’t defend either…

  • Huw Tindall

    ABs will pump everyone in TRC this year this year to be fair. It’s the basic errors and shit exit/territory game that will destroy the Wallabies (as usual). I just want to see some evolution.

    • Brisneyland Local

      Huw, yeah they will. After watching their game last night, they were rusty, but that postage stamp of an island still produced better than pretty much the whole northern hemisphere combined. We are fucked!
      Youare completely correct, basic skills suck ass. Our exit strategy is so crap. Relyig on foley to kick our exits WTF? I am hung like a rougu Jelly bean by my cock is still onger than Foley’s kicks!

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      The Springboks looked good mate. On home ground they’ll be hard

      • Nick

        At least we beat Italy, South Africa couldn’t even manage that.

  • Bobas

    Don’t agree with everything but have to upvote a good rant, does Cheik have your digits?

    • Brisneyland Local

      I have his, but I wouldnt bother. It is not worth my effort. I withdrew my corporate sponshorship of the ARU last year after the England Series, particularly after his apalling behaviour. Dont want it linked to the brand I represent!

      • Bobas

        That’s annoying, you have to make the tough calls though.
        What industry are you in, other than the vino:)

        • Brisneyland Local

          Corporate large scale commercial. Forgive me being protective. this site is the only site I get to be me with out being me! If that makes sense!

  • Fatflanker

    Was that a reach-around our No 6 was giving his prop as they packed into the scrum?…no bloody wonder the scrum was struggling. Speaking of which, what a joke the straight feed enforcement is – did the Italian hooker have to lift a leg to strike once in the entire game?

    • If you want to cry about the differences in “not straight” laws you should read them for lineouts and scrums.

      For a lineout the centre of the ball basically has to travel dead straight down the middle of the gap between the lines. The referee isn’t allowed any discretion but often chooses to allow a bit if one side doesn’t jump (no impact) or if the wind is strong, but if it gets out as far as one side’s shoulders they will just blow up anyway.

      For a scrum, some part of the ball must pass through the line under the hookers. It doesn’t say it must be straight or in the middle. That would be something like the centre of the ball must be travelling parallel to the try lines and pass through the centre of the tunnel, as defined by the midpoint of the lines of the shoulders of the front rows. Without trying hard I can put the ball in on a number of lines that meet the laws about being “straight” that are on quite a steep angle towards my second row. That’s before I do anything fancy and try and make it bounce back and so on.

      • mikado

        20.6 d “The scrum half must throw in the ball straight along the middle line, so that it first touches the ground immediately beyond the width of the nearer prop’s shoulders.”

        • Ok, sorry, the way the referees are told to interpret that is more akin to what I wrote.

        • mikado

          Agreed, the current interpretation seems to contradict the laws! In which case, WR should do the decent thing and rewrite the laws.

      • Fatflanker

        Can’t feed it directly into the 2nd row though such that it doesn’t go near the hooker which it what was happening from the get go. In fairness Oz started doing the same.

  • Adrian

    Re the game, there were enough snippets to suggest that IF everything CLICKS, they can be competitive with NZ, …and possibly win an occasional match.

    The 10 things that have to CLICK are:

    1. Timing re flat backline. A little bit deeper but take the ball flat and moving forward (solution =practice)
    2. Planned strategy when kicking to exit red zone. Kicking options to include Hunt, Beale, DHP, Hodge, depending on who is playing (solution=planning & on-field leadership)
    3. Scrum improvement (solution =practice)
    4. Use the big forwards in a POWER GAME, don’t just select them (solution =planning and on- field leadership)
    5. Hope Kerevi, Naivalu and Phipps (for bench) are fit (solution = hope)
    6. Select from all available players, including Fardy and Skelton, who have both had great years this year, irrespective of what they may have been like previously (solution = selection)
    7. Don’t select players who are obviously over the hill, irrespective of how they were once, such as Moore and possibly Genia (solution = selection)
    8. Select Beale somewhere (solution =selection)
    9. Clarify captaincy, and encourage thoughtful on field decision making (solution = coaching)
    10. Stay modest and self effacing before games

    • Jimmydubs

      I’ve read a few of your posts and I have to ask how are your always so positive?
      Seriously my liver wants to know.

    • Hope isn’t a solution mate.

      Three of your items have selection as a solution, but Cheika’s solution has never seemed like a strong point to a lot of fans. Can I point you in the on-going choice of Moore “the referees all love me” as captain as a case a point.

      Following on from that, on-field leadership seems to have gone walkabout. I think that’s a selection issue. While I don’t think Eddie Jones has worked such a big miracle for England as some of the media do his answer to England’s woes is a much better mix of experience and youth than Cheika’s and there is leadership on the pitch scattered around in a variety of positions while the younger players are learning how to play test rugby.

      • Adrian

        I agree with you. Point 7 is about not picking Moore. I’m saying he has to get selections and 7 other things right.

        I think that Moore and Genia provide negative on field leadership, and have the wrong attitudes to inspire the other players. I’m not saying Hooper is perfect, and I’d settle for Coleman, but ex captains who aren’t really good players any more do more harm than good.

        I do hope that the various things are fixed, why not?

    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Adrian I love the positive outlook you bring. I don’t agree with everything you say – Beale being a saviour for example. But good to see you stay positive.

      I think Cheika is trying to play a game plan his players skills, fitness and decision making can’t match. As you say, they do some things very well so they know how. IMO they lack mental toughness which causes the silly mistakes when under pressure. Far to much focus on mongrel, attitude, hardness and being tough which is not succeeding.

      • Surely part of being a national coach is either doing what Eddie Jones and looking at who your best 30-or-so players are putting together a game plan that will enable them to win? For all the criticisms of it, Warrenball did that because for a long time Roberts and a second big centre were the best midfield pairing in Wales without a doubt, so there was a game plan Gatland built around that. That’s changing, and so it Wales’ style of play. Gats plays favourites a bit too, there have been questions about his back row, but he has been spoiled with an embarrassment of riches there with Warburton, Tipuric, Lydiate, Faletau and now Moriaty all putting their hand up as genuine test quality players and potential Lions test players at different times baring injuries, and about his choices at 10 (Jones, to Priestland to Biggar, and now to Patchell) but he does choose a plan to players well.

        Hansen might be the only coach in the world to have the luxury of picking a plan and having enough quality players to pick players to execute it and even he doesn’t do that.

        But Cheika seems to have a plan, pick players who are unable or unwilling to execute it and then not institute the training to help them deliver it or deliver anything that looks coherent on the park. For the last few years Italy have looked piss poor in the 6N, to the point they’re talking about relegating them, or having a play-off with the winners of the shadow 6N (the ANTIM IVERIANUL CUP) to see if they’re good enough to keep their place. The stiffs in charge don’t fancy a trip to Georgia (or Romania this year) so they slapped it down but if Italy keep on getting hammered by everyone else and remain under Georgia and Romania in the world rankings, the clamour will continue.

        And yes. That’s how bad it is. The tries in the last few minutes made the score look respectable but the issues from top to bottom mean the Wobs and the fans were seriously looking at losing to a side a lot of people, and the world rankings suggest aren’t actually good enough to be in the 6N any more.

      • Adrian

        Yes, agree 100% re mental toughness. Lack of it causes nervousness, panic, tiny little bits of hesitation, and lack of timing.

        I’ll bet they practiced that flat backline a hundred times at training, and did it perfectly. A tiny bit of mental fragility on game day made it either too deep, or had the players virtually standing still. On song, this sort of backline can split any team, but it has to be done perfectly.

        Beale was just 1 of my 10 points. He alone won’t bring home the bacon, unless the 9 other things click, …and they are mentally tough

  • Harbo

    There were times when I would have given my left nut to be at a wallabies game at Suncorp although that doesn’t sound as appealing these days. Agree with everything you’ve said mate. Only problem with Cheika is I think he won over a hell of a lot of people with the Quigley call. Wallabies coaching staff have to be one of if not the worst in world rugby.

    • Brisneyland Local

      Look dont get me worng, I liked Cheika, I found his apssion and honesty and bluntness appealing. But it must deliver results. In my world (profeasional that is) you have deliver or you are patched in very short order. We Are not given the grace that he is given. We are paid well but must deliver, if we dont we are patched in short order. Most un-cerimoniously! An old boss of mine from the military before I became corporate once drilled me on the world of leadership in the big dog world. I have lived by this addage ever since:
      “As a Leader……. Expect nothing…..do something….blame no one!”
      I still stand by it and it is printed in a 2metre by 0.5 metre canvas on the wall above my desk!

      • Who?

        Oh dear – now we all know who you are! :-P

        • Brisneyland Local

          I know!
          “I’m Batman!” ;-)

        • Who?

          It’s Will Arnett!!!

        • Brisneyland Local

          One of my favourite shows, Arrested Development! Pure comdey gold! This is the last time you are going to see these! ;-)

        • Who?

          Because now you’re done filming The Lego Batman Movie, you’re off to film season 5 of Arrested Development. :-)

        • Brisneyland Local

          Got to love those Frozen Bananas!

      • idiot savant

        Are you sure spell check hasn’t corrected you? Shouldn’t it be “expect everything, do nothing, and blame everyone else”? Isn’t that leadership?

        • Brisneyland Local

          IS, well it is with the ARU!

      • Harbo

        I wonder what our team would look like under an excellent coach and supporting staff. I’m probably going to lose sleep over the next few months thinking about it!

        • Brisneyland Local

          I pine for it! We have the cattle, we just need them to be led, shown the plan and work cohesively together towards, focussing on skills.
          Be brilliant at the basics!

  • skip

    I think a problem (there are many) with this team is a lack of on-field leadership. At 20 I spent a couple of seasons in England playing with a team filled with ex national league players all in their 30s and 40s, mostly in the pack. They were good players, tough and uncompromising and they’d seen it quite a bit.

    I was an 80kg racing snake stuck on the wing and if i’d have fucked up a quick throw in like Folau did I’d have been given the hair dryer treatment by one of them, (it was once the blind side who happened to be a London Met plain clothes cop working against Jamaican yardies and believe me, I listened). Do it twice I’d have been given a shoeing at the next ruck I was in. The flip side was when finally got my tackling sorted and made a good hit, the quite word of praise meant everything at the time.

    OK, I’m picking on Folau but you could reel off loads of them for shit-house offloads, chip kicks & regulation tackles missed but hopefully you get my point.

    Can you imagine what Jerome Kaino would say to Reiko Ioane if he fucked up like that? Forwards don’t like paying for territory twice and there just doesn’t seem to be anyone yet with that gravitas in the side. I hold hopes that in future a 60 test forward will have spent so long setting the example that some flash kid will know he has to reach standards and not make idiot plays. We might even have a Ben Smith of our own to set the standards out wide – I can dream.

    Meantime, if we keep it under 50 against NZ, i’ll be impressed.

    • Waz_dog

      Yep Skip it seems that if Izzy keeps scoring tries people will gloss over the defensive brain snaps he has. He’s playing as an individual, not as a team player.

  • Bernie Chan

    Selections problematic, and working in some mysterious manner that has befuddled many…our scrum got ‘monstered’ but as others have noted our backrow were not exactly being helpful. Cheika tried the ‘two flyhalfs’ approach last season…it failed, yet we get a similar formation again when Cooper came on (for Horne?). Surely if Cooper comes on it should be at flyhalf…he needs a run at #10 before the RC, and while Foley kicked his goals his kicking in general play was once again ordinary and it was Hunt who threw the long passes that led directly to tries. Hunt spent some time at first receiver (he looks like the experienced member of the backline…not one of the least experienced, and that reflects poorly on some…) and did a fine job.
    As for the “game plan”…what the…? Run the ball from deep at the first kickoff (again!)…drop the ball and very lucky not to concede a try. In the 68th min a lock receives the ball in our 22 and instead of taking the contact, tries to promote the ball like a back…try to Italy.
    Cheika has since reinforced his “all-or-nothing” attack plan as he thinks it is the only way to beat the ABs. He may be partially right…but the fact that we can’t execute such a plan against Scotland or Italy would suggest we can’t against the ABS (or the Boks..).

    • Brisneyland Local

      Bernie, you are correct. Hunt is looking like the experienced guy in the backline. He is by age that is for sure, but I think his confidence and maturity are showing. Cooper must be played at 10, screwing around with it just shows that Cheika has a plan and he cant adapt it to what is in front of him. And that scares the utter bejesus out of me! It was evident last year when Foley screwed the pooch and yet rather than drop him like any other player who has had a shocker, he just moved him to 12, because he has to be part of his plan!

      • Bernie Chan

        Maybe, just maybe…Cheika is some kind of rugby savant after all…? He can see s#@t nobody else can see…I suspect that is not the case, but maybe…after all he keeps Grey as the Defence Coach (and everyone has seen the TAHs and Wallas defence leak a lot of points..) and has ‘anointed’ Larkham as his successor (does he decide, or the ARU…?).

        • Brisneyland Local

          ARU do, but the reality is in this old boys club you fill deadman shoes! So they all line up after each other. And Cheika isnt a Savant, and idiot perhaps but not a savant!

  • Who?

    This is, for mine, the key line:

    I am pretty sure we have the cattle, it is the skills and the game plan part that is killing us, plus our refusal to ditch some players, and our continuance to play players out of position.
    We are playing below ourselves. We traditionally do – the last decade, we’ve consistently played to the level of our opposition (or just below it, until the ABs decided to start handing out genuine thrashings) – but now we’re not even doing that. We have players with skill and talent. Maybe fitness is an issue. But fitness is more of an issue when there’s less intelligence. It’s recently been said that Ben Smith’s most important pace isn’t in his legs, it’s between his ears, where he sees opportunities opening up that other people can’t understand. Aaron Smith, at his best, is the same – you see him run straight lines to places you wouldn’t expect live. Morgan Turinui, as a player, was similar. You watch him at his best – look at some of the stuff he did with the Reds – he’d hit hole after hole, and the fact that he’d immediately look for someone to feed showed that it wasn’t because he was fit or fast!!! He was in the right place at the right time, and his rugby brain was the key to that. So maybe we have a fitness issue. But it’s not the only issue, not by a long way.
    Far too many modern coaches have an approach where they decide they style they want, believe it’s unbeatable, and then expect players to fit that mould. But the reality is that a real coach – a coach, not an architect – will come up with solutions based on what his players offer, not based on what he wants them to offer. Our platforms and strategies don’t use the players we have available, and I’m not sure they’ll take us to the top even if we execute the perfectly. Further, we don’t always select the best players.
    It’s time to return to a thinking game. A game based on rat cunning, which was our heritage. Australia isn’t the home of power Rugby. We’re not the home of big scrums (though we’ve got to do better than we did on the weekend). We’re the home of players who are smart enough to make opponents confused, and who find ways to make their opposition uncomfortable. When was the last time we did that? As opposed to trying to start handbags..?

    • Brisneyland Local

      Who you are a very bright man, and would be happy to sit down with you over a large cheese platter and copious amounts of my favourite Barossa Red!
      General Dwight D Eisenhower once said “Plans are nothing….planning is everything!”
      Which to this humble ex-military man, meant, that plans only get you to the start line. The enemy or in this rugby case, the opposition not only has a say, but has a vote too. Which means that your plan gets you to the start line, but it is your ability to adapt and plan as the situation changes in fornt of you that counts. Your “Boyd Loop” or OODA loop (Google that one) is the saving factor.
      Our problem is, particualry with this coaching staff, they are not prepared to change or manipulate their plans, as the situation develops in front of them.

      • Who?

        We’ve really been in a quandary with coaching since Macqueen left, haven’t we..? Eddie Jones was programmed rugby. Everything was specified. A lot of what was planned was excellent, but it was too overspecified. Deans was, “Play what’s in front of you.” Which meant there wasn’t always a lot of structure there. Link had a reasonable balance but couldn’t get around the off field rubbish. Cheika, well, he’s got a plan, but it’s far too simple. And unadaptable.
        For mine, structure and planning gives you something to use to create opportunities, which you then take as they arise. Which is why your selection of your 9 and 10 has to be based off their vision and decision making, not their kicking, certainly not their running games. You have to ensure their running/passing/kicking is of the standard to implement the plan and to take the opportunities in front of them, but their vision and decision making is the key.
        Structure also needs to be flexible. I’m sure that if you were planning strategies in business or back in the military, you wouldn’t have had a singular plan for all occasions… Everyone has to have a plan not only for full scale attack, but also for full scale retreat. Because everyone faces both at some point.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Who, right I am flying you to Brissy for a night on the gas! Yes you do, in the military and the business world, everything is a spectrum, through high end collective training your team adapts and can play what I call drop ball. But your individual skills “Shoot, navigate and communicate” must be good then you can adapt. You must be able to recognise where you are in the spectrum, to determine, and fucking quickly, whether you are winning or getting your ass kicked, the iether reinforce or retreat as quickly as possible.

        • Campbell Kyle

          Put Hodge at 1st 58 he’ll kick us into attack

    • idiot savant

      Gee you’re opening up a Pandoras box Who. Because I think there is an argument that we have a game plan built around what 3 key players offer, none of whom could be said to possess the majority skills for their position. And the coach’s insistence on only them playing in those positions means a host of compromises in other positions. All of which affects the game plans we play and the game plans oppositions choose to play against us.

      At the moment we are gifting a game plan to our opponents as exploited successfully by England and Scotland (and nearly Italy). Kick for territory, set a committed defensive line and wait for mistakes. The ABs won have to do this to beat us but they will kick for territory to stop us from being able to score and then just run over the top of us.

      • Mica

        “they will kick for territory to stop us from being able to score and then just run over the top of us.”

        Then we won’t be able to exit our d zone effectively and when they get straight back on the attack we won’t have anyone who can affect a ruck turnover, so will need to bank on them making a mistake…….cause that happens all the time…..

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    What gets me is the number of passes that are behind the player. It’s systematic across the field and I just don’t understand it at this level. That and the dumb decisions.

    Sorry mate I’ve got nothing

    • Brisneyland Local

      Neither do I !
      I was trying so hard to be positive.
      It is like when I talk about Canberra, my mum always said that if you have nothing positive to say then dont say anything at all.
      so when I talk about Canberra I say it “Has great water pressure!”

    • Waz_dog

      They’re playing too flat – they only time the attack actually has depth to it is on set plays. Hunt gave a perfect catch pass and Folu overran it….

    • Nick

      - No real improvement shown from last week.
      – We constantly make poor decisions in attack and defence.
      – The basic skills are performed very poorly.
      – Very frustrating.

  • Andy

    Another really poor game from our guys. I agree with all the comments on the game plan but I do also think our team is not near fit enough to execute the fast game they want to play. Not sure who to blame here. The SR teams for not getting players up to scratch or the national team coach for trying to play a game that our guys were not capable of playing in their current condition. I guess the answer is probably both.

    I also don’t think the replacements are as obvious as some people are suggesting. I just don’t think we have the cattle based on SR form alone.

  • mikado

    Entertaining game. The Wallabies had moments of brilliance and took their tries very well. However a lot of really dumb stuff too. The ABs and Saffas will be pretty happy come TRC. Italy are a real Jekyll & Hyde team, and this match saw the Dottore Jekyll version, which is encouraging.

    The Wallaby front row is a huge concern. Moore seems well past his best but I’ve seen nothing to suggest that the alternatives are any better. I don’t understand the scrum well enough to be sure whether the stream of penalties against the Wallabies was fair or not. I wouldn’t have picked Italy as particularly strong in the scrum, and in recent times AAA and Kepu in particular seemed solid so I don’t know why it went so wrong this time around.

    I’m not all that sold on KH at centre. Two nice floated passes for tries, to be fair, but not an awful lot else for me.

    Big missed opportunity not to give Powell more game time in this series. He looks a very useful SH and Genia is not doing particularly well so what’s to lose?

    The crowd numbers looked awful. I know that Italy are not box office, but even so…

    • jamie

      The alternative hookers don’t look any better because they’ve had no fucking game time. Ready and Latu are Ready. They should’ve played all 3 games for 40 min each.

    • Alister Smith

      Italy generally are pretty impressive at scrum time but this wasn’t there best front row – they were all given a holiday from this tour – so ….i guess its just another area we have to improve on

      With regards to Powell – perhaps Cheika was ready to put him on with 10-15 minutes to go but then they scored and were within a point and we lost a man to the sinbin – possibly not the ideal situation to put the second string halfback into. Against Scotland it was pretty close all the way and we ended up losing so again not an ideal opportunity to blood someone – still you are correct – these games against lesser oppositions are better times to give someone else a run than saving it up for the Rugby Championship when all our opposition is top shelf.

  • Waz_dog

    Hunt saved two tries in defence and stopped several plays where they had the numerical advantage. Beale is not going to even get close to Hunt’s defence standards and a lot of holes are going to get opened up.

    I was particularly pissed off at Folu’s positional play in d when they scored a couple of tries wondering where the fark is our fullback???? Hunt to fullback and Folu to wing – is it really that had to comprehend?

    As much as I don’t like it you can even run Foley/Beale in the 10/12 and still feel a lot more confident with Hunt covering the breaks.

  • Hoss

    BL – 2 points of umbridge

    1. You cant fill the corp box, but no offer on GAGR site ?? Have checked with my parole office and he assures me that as long as I am back for 8.30pm roll call all is good, so………
    2. We don’t have the cattle and that’s the reality of Aus Rugby at present. I pose this to you How many of our boys would make a NZ 23 or a World 23 for that matter – to me = 0.

    I dont gloss over the many and varied other issues surrounding the Wallabies, but whats the old adage of a sows ear and a silk purse ?

    • Brisneyland Local

      I accept point one, but the department of coreections doesnt work weekends, that I am aware of. Believe it or not I was actually talking to my mates (because the freind who couldnt come had already paid his slot so the place would have been free), and said we should have put it up on GAGR. (They are readers but dont post). We then debated the criteria of who should come, and how the logistics would work. It did my head in.
      But was genuinely considered!
      Re point two, you are right, our team are no AB’s or BIL’s. BUt with a considered game plan we could be competitive, I dont think we would win, but at the moment after watching the First BIL’s vs AB’s game you could have an AB’s vs Rest of the World 15 and they still wouldnt come close to the Darkness!

  • Alister Smith

    The game was extremely difficult to watch…. If I understand the coach correctly we are trying to play a very up tempo, aggressive attacking style of play and I see elements of that at times. But there is some stuff I just can’t work out. We don’t necessarily seem to be choosing when and where to attack very well and the execution is obviously wanting. We might be able to put some of it down to fitness but many of the errors – both physically and errors in judgement – occurred early in the game when players were fresh. I try not to be too critical. I like Michael Cheika and having done a little bit of coaching I am sure of one thing…I couldnt do a better job myself. However, if they strategy, structure and game plan that we are adopting is beyond the skills and fitness of the players we have then why don’t we play a simpler game, one our players can manage, while we develop our skills and fitness further. We are being beaten or challenged by teams that appear to be playing a simpler game plan but performing it better with fewer errors. I know there is an issue about us needing to play an attractive game to attract crowds etc but there needs to be some balance with this – people aren’t going to come and watch a team that occasionally plays some brilliant football but also makes a heap of errors and eventually loses. I am involved in music and its common to see competing bands playing tunes that just too far above the ability of some of their players to the detriment of the whole overall sound. Better to play some that you can play well and get all your fundamentals right and then build or evolve your play so that you can handle more challenging tunes. In the same way, i think we are getting the cart before the horse a bit with our play. Maybe if we stripped our game right back, worked on our fitness, some key areas like scrums, line-outs and restarts, positive aggression at the breakdown and kicking a little bit more for position to give ourselves a rest if we aren’t that fit. Then we can build on that and get a bit fancier when we are able to. It almost seems that we have first identified the game plan to beat the All Blacks and are now looking to find the players to play it and we can’t seem to find them/get them up to it. Might it be a better approach to look at the strengths of the players we do have available, develop a simplified game plan to suit those strengths and then tinker with it and improve and evolve it constantly – Kaizen! as the Japanese say – baby steps. I think we are trying to run before we can walk. Anyway – end of rant/ramble not sure anyone got anything out of it but I feel better somehow.

Italy
@tremain_focused

Rugby tragic, who combines his two hobbies of rugby and photography.

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