Saturday, June 9, 2012

RUGBY TEST MATCH: Australia To Make Amends

09.06.2012 Wales v Australia in Brisbane

Venue: Suncorp Stadium

Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa)

The Welsh are out for revenge. Australia defeated them 21-18 in the playoff 3rd-4th place at the 2011 Rugby World Cup. Australia defeated them again in the Cardiff rematch in December.In addition, Australia has constantly heaped humiliation on the Welsh by defeating them comfortably in Cardiff of recent years. Also, Wales has not one a test match in Australia since 1969. Can this Welsh side change rugby history?

Wales arrive in Australia with a huge reputation. Grand Slam winner of the 6 Nations International Championship and one of the exciting yet unsuccessful teams at the 2011 Rugby World Cup, they have done plenty to restore the old Welsh rugby flame.

Like all rugby test teams in June Wales have had to blood some new players. Yet the bulk of that Grand Slam team has arrived in Australia. This surely is a great opportunity for a Northern Hemisphere side to gain a rare victory over a Southern Hemisphere down under. Will Australia be able to hold out the Welsh onslaught?

Australia will be smarting over their loss to Scotland on Tuesday. It wasn’t a poor Australian effort. They had most of the territorial advantage and most of the ball. They just didn’t have enough grunt to punch through the fantastic Scottish defence. So what will be different about Australia tonight?

Australia has kept the halves combination of Genia and Barnes. But the centres will have more zest in McCabe and Horne, plus the experience of Adam-Cooper at fullback.

Palu at number eight and a vastly experienced front row completes an Australian side that looks good all round. Will it be enough to tackle the Welsh?
This is  a very different Welsh side that defeated the Barbarians before they left for Australia. Most of the experienced players are back in the side including their charismatic leader Sam Warburton.

This is going to be one heck of a rugby test match. It’ll be a cracker! It could go either way.

Last Five Encounters
03.12.2011 Australia 24-18 in Cardiff
21.10.2012 Australia 21-18 in Auckland (World Cup, Playoff 3rd-4th)
06.11.2010 Australia 25-16 in Cardiff
28.11.2009 Australia 33-12 in Cardiff
29.11.2008 Wales 21-18 in Cardiff

Wales last defeated Australia in Australia in 1969, winning 19-16 in Sydney.

Australia Last Five

05.06.2012 v Scotland L 6-9 in Newcastle
03.12.2011 v Wales W 24-18 in Cardiff
31.10.2011 v Wales W 21-18 in Auckland (World Cup, Playoff 3rd-4th)
16.10.2011 v New Zealand L 6-20 in Auckland (World Cup, Semi-final)
09.10.2011 v South Africa W 11-9 in Wellington (World Cup, Quarter-final)

Wales Last Five

02.06.2012 v Barbarians (UK) RFC W 30-21 in Cardiff
17.03.2012 v France W 16-9 in Cardiff (6 Nations)
10.03.2012 v Italy W 24-3 in Cardiff (6 Nations)
25.02.2012 v England W 19-12 at Twickenham (6 Nations)
12.02.2012 v Scotland W 27-13 in Cardiff (6 Nations)

GWC Rugby Rankings World Table-Australia 3rd, Wales 6th

IRB Ranking Points
Australia 87.99, Wales 83.32

Prediction: Australia to bounce back and win, just, by 2 points




15 Adam Ashley-Cooper  NSW Waratahs
14 Joseph Tomane  ACT Brumbies
13 Robert Horne NSW Waratahs
12 Patrick McCabe ACT Brumbies
11 Digby Ioane  Queensland Reds
10 Berrick Barnes  NSW Waratahs
9 William Genia Queensland Reds
8 Wycliff Palu  NSW Waratahs
7 David Pocock (Capt.) WA Western Force
6 Scott Higginbotham  Queensland Reds
5 Nathan Sharpe WA Western Force
4 Robert Simmons  Queensland Reds
3 Sekope Kepu  NSW Waratahs
2 Tatafu Polota Nau  NSW Waratahs
1 Ben Robinson NSW Waratahs
16 Stephan Moore ACT Brumbies
17 Benjamin Alexander  ACT Brumbies
18 David Dennis  NSW Waratahs
19 Michael Hooper  ACT Brumbies
20 Nicholas White ACT Brumbies
21 Anthony Fainga’a  Queensland Reds
22 Michael Harris  Queensland Reds
HEAD COACH: Robbie Deans



15 Leigh Halfpenny  Cardiff Blues
14 Alexander Cuthbert  Cardiff Blues
13 Jonathan Davies  Llanelly Scarlets
12 Scott Williams  Llanelly Scarlets
11 George North Llanelly Scarlets
10 Rhys Priestland Llanelly Scarlets
9 Michael Phillips  Bayonne, France
8 Tobias Faletau  Newport Gwent Dragons
7 Samuel Warburton (Capt.)  Neath Swansea Ospreys
6 Daniel Lydiate Newport Gwent Dragons
5 Luke Charteris  Newport Gwent Dragons
4 Bradley Davies  Cardiff Blues
3 Adam Jones  Neath Swansea Ospreys
2 Kenneth Owens  Llanelly Scarlets
1 Gethin Jenkins  Cardiff Blues
16 Matthew Rees  Llanelly Scarlets
17 Paul James  Neath Swansea Ospreys
18 Alyn-Wyn Jones  Neath Swansea Ospreys
19 Ryan Jones  Neath Swansea Ospreys
20 Lloyd Williams  Cardiff Blues
21 James Hook  Perpignan, France
22 Ashley Beck * Neath Swansea Ospreys
HEAD COACH: Rob Howley (temp.)
* New test cap

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