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Australia v Ireland, Sat 9th June @ 8.00pm, Suncorp Brisbane

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Snotterbox

Frank Nicholson (4)
Ought to be but hasn’t always looked it at times (Scotland vs Aus last year in June?). Have seen good defensive efforts to hold teams out like Wales 2015 but the volume of enormous shots in defence was something else.
The big hits must’ve been a conscious choice to establish dominance. Its a risky strategy bur great when it works - ie no one nimbly steps round the lumbering beserker. Like good comedy, it’s all in the




timing.
 

fatprop

George Gregan (70)
Staff member
Beale is a concern.
His presence was vital last night. His combination with Foley was superb and he created several line breaks.
Shoulder didn’t look good at the end.


Yeah, a few don't seem to get that for Beale to do his stuff you need someone to do those basics and underplay his hand. Then Beale gets to float in and pick his moments

So often Beale does that special unexpected thing but it is Foley who provides that last pass or touches twice to score
 

gel

Ken Catchpole (46)
Wallabies played well against a tough opposition. Across the board, I think the Australians played well.

I would still change the wallabies captaincy, but I know that is never going to happen no matter how often the referees show their disdain for him.
 

Snotterbox

Frank Nicholson (4)
I think it's safe to assume that anyone who's interested will have caught up with the overnight tests so:

1 New Zealand 93.99
2 Ireland 88.05 (-1.06)
3 (↑4) Australia 86.56 (+1.06)
4 (↓3) England 85.19 (-1.05)
5 Wales 85.13 (+0.68)
6 Scotland 83.83
7 South Africa 83.81 (+1.05)
8 France 79.10
9 (↑10) Fiji 77.93
10 (↓9) Argentina 77.54 (-0.68)
11 Japan 76.02 (+0.37)
12 Georgia 75.05 (+1.09)
13 Tonga 70.78 (-1.09)
14 Italy 70.73 (-0.37)

Ah had England game on ice for the afternoon. Still, great ratings. 3 is twice as good as 4.
 

Kenny Powers

Ron Walden (29)
I would still change the wallabies captaincy, but I know that is never going to happen no matter how often the referees show their disdain for him.


When in the game did the ref show his disdain for him?

I thought his relationship was fine with ref, questioned politely and once the ref had said his piece left it at that.

It was the Irish that were marched 10 and a scrum turned to a penalty on dissent.

An unhelpful and unnecessary comment.
 

fatprop

George Gregan (70)
Staff member
When in the game did the ref show his disdain for him?

I thought his relationship was fine with ref, questioned politely and once the ref had said his piece left it at that.

It was the Irish that were marched 10 and a scrum turned to a penalty on dissent.

An unhelpful and unnecessary comment.


It was one of his first games as wobs captain, the taint is strong and lingering (first impressions)
 

Up the Guts

Steve Williams (59)
It was one of his first games as wobs captain, the taint is strong and lingering (first impressions)
Yeah bit unfair on Hooper, when the Brumbies played the Jaguares in Canberra Gardner got extremely pissed off with Pocock and basically didn’t listen to anything he said. Sometimes even the most courteous of players get ref offside.
 

Gnostic

Mark Ella (57)
Well I have arrived back at home after the yearly tour of duty with the boys to Brisvegas.

What a weekend it was, the best of what is rugby for me, a few beers, wines, whiskeys...…, great food and good mates. I went there fully expected a moderate loss, after the disappointment that was the season last year, and to my great delight the Wallabies turned it on and capped off what was a great couple of days.

On the game my observations from the ground without seeing a replay or highlights
1) That was perhaps one of the most frustrating performances not just by a referee but by the TMO I can recall. I can only hope that both receive significant retraining before they again take the field/seat in Comms in a test match. The performance threatened to derail the game at the stadium with the perplexing rulings which the large crowd with no luxury of commentary were largely left wondering what the F^%$%^ was going on as we waited, waited some more and then waited some more while the F*&^%$#!!!! arsed about for an excessively long time to make pretty straight forward decisions. For mine the man in the middle lost control of the game and the assistant became the referee, or perhaps even the TV Production Manager did. Extremely urgent action from World Rugby is required to address this as the situation is becoming farcical and opening the Officials to ridicule.
2) As I said I fully expected the Irish would win this game and was extremely heartened to see that Grey's horrible defensive structure that saw people running are shuffling positions all over the shop from last year has been ditched. The simplicity of people defending in their position and them having to only worry about being in that position may have been a big factor in the massively improved defensive performance of players like Beale and Kerevi. This was where I expected the Irish to attack and break the Wallabies again and again, but it just did not happen and indeed after 20 minutes which saw both Irish halves left reeling from massive tackles they seemed to back away just a tad. Just outstanding and I must say I am hearted as that makes me think that perhaps Cheika and Grey are in fact able to learn from was a pretty abject failure of a system from last year and two years at the Tahs. The confidence that being trusted to do the job in their positions must be uplifting for Beale, Kerevi and to some degree Foley after all the words spouted by coaches and team mates but the previous structure in practice said something totally different
3) The Irish pissed me off greatly after 20 minutes taking breaks for the magic water at every stoppage. They obviously struggled with the pace of the game and the referee allowed them to slow it monumentally.
4) How long has it been since Australia could genuinely field two threatening and genuinely dominant front rows? Add in what the fact that we have great depth in the second and back row excepting 6 and I am genuinely upbeat. I note that some Irish supporters were complaining about the scrum penalty at the end but I was right behind it and it was clearly obvious that the Irish were done on their TH side by none other than Robertson and when they lost the first shove they actively pulled it round the 90 and were yelling to claim it. It was a clear penalty. If you can check the footage as a very revealing thing will be seen, Latu had a "lose" bind to Tupou and a very tight bind to Robertson (clearly seen when they stand up as the Irish wheel away from the Wallabies who stay reasonably squad to the tryline) which is obviously why the Irish TH got smashed and they couldn't hold. Brilliant bit of work.

My only downer is the quality and quantity of kicking from hand. On far too many occasions the kicks were not contestable and some were just downright awful in execution. We have an absolutely devastating back line with ball in hand, I love that they are developing an attacking kicking game as it has been neglected for far too long with the falsity of the ball in hand "running game" myth, but it can also be over used and we seriously need to see vast improvements in the quality of the execution of the skill.
 

Derpus

George Gregan (70)
My only downer is the quality and quantity of kicking from hand. On far too many occasions the kicks were not contestable and some were just downright awful in execution. We have an absolutely devastating back line with ball in hand, I love that they are developing an attacking kicking game as it has been neglected for far too long with the falsity of the ball in hand "running game" myth, but it can also be over used and we seriously need to see vast improvements in the quality of the execution of the skill.
I think this was a clear strategy. I think this was very much in the vein of taking the scrum option consistently against the English in the world cup. Take their advantage and turn it against them. Execution was shocking but it certainly caught them off guard.
 

formerflanker

Ken Catchpole (46)
Quite a few comments above bemoaning our lineout. The first throw by BPA was won by the Irish, and another later in the match went over the top and was snaffled by the Irish. Were there any other losses that I missed? I thought BPA put in a credible effort for his first test as well.
From memory, there were another two line outs where the jumper didn't go up in time/hooker threw too early. We scrambled the ball back but not cleanly.
 
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Dctarget

John Eales (66)
Was that on some poor unsuspecting onlooker on the sideline? I don't think he was on the field 10 minutes before his dropped pass fuck up.
Simmons came on with 26 minutes to go, he's the one in the blue head gear. At the 59th minute he smacks the supposed beast of the Emerald Isle, Tadhg Furlong, a few metres back.


0Vn09V.gif

I know we love to deride Simmons but he did good there, move along.
 

Strewthcobber

Mark Ella (57)
It was a completely dominant scrum, but again it was the LH side that really had the Irish under pressure. There was no evidence in this match that Kepu/Simmons (or TT/Simmons) is more effective than Robertson/Coleman.
The LH side could go around the irish scrum and get the penalty because the TH side - tt and simmo - were rocks at that scrum, they had the entire Irish pack unsuccessfully pushing through them




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Joe Blow

Peter Sullivan (51)
Simmons came on with 26 minutes to go, he's the one in the blue head gear. At the 59th minute he smacks the supposed beast of the Emerald Isle, Tadhg Furlong, a few metres back.


0Vn09V.gif

I know we love to deride Simmons but he did good there, move along.
It’s a shame he didn’t glove the little pop pass from Genia. He was in for all money and everyone here would be demanding he start next week. I think he contributed well but there is also Arnold to consider. I would guess that Simmo holds his spot.
 

Snotterbox

Frank Nicholson (4)
It’s a shame he didn’t glove the little pop pass from Genia. He was in for all money and everyone here would be demanding he start next week. I think he contributed well but there is also Arnold to consider. I would guess that Simmo holds his spot.
His problem is Rory Arnold. He’s locked in a selection battle now, which is good. Although Simmons in underrated, Arnold has more upside. If Rodda hadn’t emerged it’d be more clearcut.
 

Scoey

Tony Shaw (54)
Almost everything that I would want to say has been said. Summing up:

Forwards = Excellent
TMO involvement = Poor
Ireland will be better game 2 = we will need to be better game 2
Beale and Pocock = freakish

The only other thing I want to say is I know everyone likes to rag on Simmons but he did well on Sat night. He did everything you want your giraffes to do. Hit rucks, defended well in tight, scrummed well and shored up the lineout. I think you're grasping at straws if your complaint of him is the dropped pass when he was in the hole. He ran a great line and the ball was passed behind his hip. When you play flat like that the pass has to be millimetre perfect and that one wasn't. Sure a centre might've hung on to that one but when it's one of your tight five it's got to be just in front of them.
 

Brumby Runner

David Wilson (68)
The LH side could go around the irish scrum and get the penalty because the TH side - tt and simmo - were rocks at that scrum, they had the entire Irish pack unsuccessfully pushing through them




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I am more inclined to accept Gnostic's eyewitness account above of the impact of our LH side in that scrum. I agree that the TH side stood firm, but it was our LH side that gained dominance (over the World's best No 3, allegedly).

Just from my viewing generally, I think I'd prefer a combination of Coleman/Pocock pushing behind the prop than one of Simmons/Hooper.
 

Lindommer

Steve Williams (59)
Staff member
That was a very, very good win against the best NH side. Ireland have been building this team for a some years now, and coupled with Leinster's wins in the European Cup and Pro14 and a full touring squad they've shown their intent and ability to match it with the best SH sides.

My thoughts;

Australia
  • Before the game kicked off we had a few selection issues; the unavailability of Dempsey, Hanigan, Arnold and Uelese had to be addressed. It's pertinent to note these absences were all in the forwards and were well covered this match, in fact I'd opine we have adequate depth in all forwards' positions ATM except, possibly, at 8. As with most traditionalists I'd prefer a big bruiser like Kefu or Lyons at 8 but Cheika seems to've worked a way to style this team's tactics so's one isn't missed. To cover those absences speaks volumes for Australian rugby, long may it continue. The prospect of those four mentioned earlier plus TPN and Slipper for a potential RWC squad is very encouraging.
  • On the selection front Cheika's decision to resist selecting Douglas and big Taqele despite their form must be noted. The RWC is now 15 months away, blokes who aren't going to be there for some reason or another shouldn't be considered.
  • The forwards were outstanding against a well-drilled, traditional NH pack. The Irish didn't have our speed in the pigs (or elsewhere around the park and called for a few too many stoppages to catch their collective breath) which led them to some holding-down tactics against our two flyers. This up-tempo game MUST be kept at all cost for the remaining two matches; Ireland will struggle to keep up especially if our accuracy increases.
  • The scrum was a delight to behold. After watching the lightweight Tahs scrum get pushed around in a few games I was thrilled to see the weights for the first scrum here: what, 50kg heavier. I hope you noted that, Gibson. But the technique and commitment to hold the Irish scrum was outstanding. The fact we more than matched the best NH scrum shouldn't be under-estimated.
  • I wouldn't worry too much about the occasional lapses with the lineout. The stuff-ups were minor matters of timing and communications, small things which can be addressed on the training paddock.
  • After some ordinary performances in defence these past few years Grey seems to've realised that KISS is the way to go. Wasn't it delightful to watch Beale put Murray on his back with a crunching tackle? The defence overall was excellent, especially considering the weight of possession Ireland had in the first half of both halves.
  • Genia seems to've caught a dose of the Gregans: the ball isn't going to hatch sitting there at the base of rucks, Will. The times we did play with speed showed the Irish up, they couldn't keep up. Surely there was a cue there quick ruck ball was the way to go.
  • Open field kicking is an Achilles heel for Australian rugby generally, and we performed to order on Saturday evening. There just doesn't seem to be any thought or point to many of our kicks, which resulted in giving easy possession back to the Irish. And many of those kicks were far too short. With the best oval ball kickers in the world on hand I can never understand why we're such poor kickers. If I was in charge Foley and Beale (and others) would be doing a few hours' practice every week with the local AFL team's coaching staff to improve their kicking.
  • The width and speed of play by the backs was typically Australian. I was thrilled to see the back three get the ball in space after some excellent timing.
  • I hope the same 23 are selected for next week.
Ireland
  • The Irish play a traditional NH style of rugby very well. This match showed up the limitations of that style on firm grounds against an opposition who counter them with an up-tempo style. When the match was in first or second phase or in subsequent phases close to the breakdown Ireland looked good. Their competition at the breakdown was accurate and physical, sorta what we'd expect from a good NH side.
  • They didn't quite have the perfect backline setup I noticed the Scots employed here last year and I felt they kicked too much good possession away. Did the ball get to an Irish winger through the hands all match? I can't recall one.
  • The width of Australian play showed up the Irish team's patterns. Two or three phases out on the edges and I noticed the Irish defence was struggling, although that try-saving tackle on Koroibete was magnificent.
  • When Ireland get their best 15 starting in Melbourne they'll be a formidable threat.
 
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