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Sport Bold Bledisloe selection calls prove the Wallabies are in excellent hands

00:41  17 october  2020
00:41  17 october  2020 Source:   theroar.com.au

Bledisloe Cup: Dave Rennie helping Wallabies to embrace multi-cultural heritage ahead of Bledisloe Cup

  Bledisloe Cup: Dave Rennie helping Wallabies to embrace multi-cultural heritage ahead of Bledisloe Cup Bledisloe Cup: Dave Rennie helping Wallabies to embrace multi-cultural heritage ahead of Bledisloe CupThe New Zealand-born Rennie was announced as head coach in November, replacing Michael Cheika after the Wallabies quarter-final defeat in 2019.

That was Dave Rennie’s take on the Wallabies ’ draw with the All Blacks in Bledisloe 1, and yesterday’s selections for Bledisloe 2 proved it Yet the changes speak to a coach who knows precisely what he’s looking for from the Wallabies . Forwards coach Geoff Parling might have talked

Bold Bledisloe selection calls prove the Wallabies are in excellent hands . The All Blacks and Wallabies will meet at Eden Park in a crucial Bledisloe Cup clash in Game 2 of the 2020 series. If you’re looking to watch the match via a live stream of catch it all on TV, here’s everything you need to

“We’re still miles from where we need to be.”

That was Dave Rennie’s take on the Wallabies’ draw with the All Blacks in Bledisloe 1, and yesterday’s selections for Bledisloe 2 proved it wasn’t just idle chat.

It was a surprise to see four players brought into the team following the 16-all stalemate in Wellington – a result not a single Australian rugby fan would have tuned down had they been offered it pre-game.

Yet the changes speak to a coach who knows precisely what he’s looking for from the Wallabies.

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Wallabies ' tactical plan to get the Bledisloe Cup back from the All Blacks. Banned Wallaby James Slipper will make his return for the Super Rugby all-stars at Leichhardt Oval. "I know how important this game could prove to be ahead of the Bledisloe Cup so we need to play with real accuracy and

Bold Bledisloe selection calls prove the Wallabies are in excellent hands . “ We ’ re still miles from where we need to be .” The All Blacks and Wallabies have played out a thrilling draw in Bledisloe 1, finishing all square at 16-all after an enthralling match.

Forwards coach Geoff Parling might have talked on Thursday about the need to back players in, but ultimately Rennie’s job is to win rugby matches, not to reward men who were on the field during a decent result but were below their personal best.

The Australian lineout was poor in Game 1 both in the quality of ball it generated and the number of lost throws, particularly in the first half. The side’s attacking cleanout was similarly inaccurate.

Viewed through that lens, the changes make absolute sense. Ned Hanigan is not the same underdeveloped player still figuring out how to play his role that Wallabies fans saw when he was a regular under Michael Cheika. He was a strong lineout operator for the Waratahs this year and offers a taller, heavier body in contact than Pete Samu.

"We're disappointed": Wallabies coach Dave Rennie not satisfied after draw in opening Bledisloe Cup match

  "We're disappointed": Wallabies coach Dave Rennie not satisfied after draw in opening Bledisloe Cup matchFlyhalf James O'Connor looked to have given his side a shock win with a 73rd-minute penalty, but the home side levelled through Jordie Barrett with 90-seconds left on the clock when Rob Simmons was penalised at a maul.

Bold Bledisloe selection calls prove the Wallabies are in excellent hands . theroar.com.au - Daniel Jeffrey. “ We ’ re still miles from where we need to be .”That was Dave Rennie’s take on the Wallabies ’ draw with the All Blacks in Bledisloe 1, and yesterday’s …

Wallabies coach Michael Cheika and fellow selection panelists Scott Johnson and Michael O'Connor have otherwise backed the same starting team to repeat last week's heroics, albeit against a vastly-different All Blacks The Wallabies are trying to win the Bledisloe Cup for the first time since 2002.

Ned Hanigan: much improved. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Liam Wright, while not having as solid a frame yet, is at home sticking his head into rucks and is a better lineout receiver than Rob Valetini.

Brandon Paenga-Amosa offers a less-certain improvement there, but it’s worth considering how many of the Reds’ woes at that particular set piece were due to the team’s system, rather than their hooker.

As Parling pointed out after his appointment, the Queensland hooker was one of the best throwers in Super Rugby in 2019, and Paenga-Amosa himself said in late September that national lineout set-up, after an initial learning curve, is less complex than his Reds equivalent. Pairing him with state teammate Taniela Tupou should give the front row more go-ahead at scrum time, too.

As for adding Jordan Petaia for Noah Lolesio, who didn’t get off the pine last week, it’s a no-brainer: Matt To’omua can cover flyhalf should James O’Connor go down injured; Reece Hodge or, at a stretch, Hunter Paisami can both step into 12 if To’omua goes down; and Petaia is a star-in-waiting. A player of his skill belongs in the Wallabies, and his injury history makes putting him on the bench a prudent decision.

Australian hubris sets up Wallabies for Eden Park reality check

  Australian hubris sets up Wallabies for Eden Park reality check Australian hubris sets up Wallabies for Eden Park reality checkMELBOURNE (Reuters) - A draw against New Zealand is as good as a win for some pundits in Australia who have seized on Wellington as proof the Wallabies are ready to rise up and claim the Bledisloe Cup for the first time in 18 years.

The first Wallabies team of the Dave Rennie era has been announced, the new coach naming three debutants in The other major selection battle, that of tighthead prop, has gone to Taniela Tupou. Reece Hodge takes the final spot on the bench as the utility back. Wallabies team for Bledisloe 1.

Bold Bledisloe selection calls prove the Wallabies are in excellent hands . “ We ’ re still miles from where we need to be .”That was Dave Rennie’s take on the Wallabies ’ draw with the All Blacks in Bledisloe 1, and yesterday’s …

So there are strong merits to each of the individual changes, but collectively they indicate an excellent attitude from the Wallabies brainstrust, one which acknowledges that rolling out the same team and expecting a similar or better result against the All Blacks would be foolhardy.


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For a team that doesn’t get to practice it much, New Zealand are incredibly good at responding to losses.

The last time Australia beat New Zealand, this happened a week later. (Photo by Renee McKay/Getty Images)

Between 2015 and 2020, they lost just eight of their 65 Tests. In the matches immediately after those setbacks, they outscored their collective opposition 339-93. That speaks of a side which aren’t so much welcoming of adversity as just downright hostile to any perception they might not be the best team in the world.

Yes, the Bledisloe 1 thriller wasn’t a defeat, but much of the reaction to the result has been reminiscent of one. Captain Sam Cane was gutted in his post-match interview. Selector Grant Fox bristled at criticism in an appearance on The Breakdown. Assistant coach John Plumtree claimed All Blacks don’t complain about refereeing shortly after he had complained about the refereeing.

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Safe to assume, then, that the on-field response tomorrow will be as fierce as if it was coming off the back of a loss. When coupled with a trip to Auckland, that has spelt naught but disaster for the Wallabies in recent times.

Two of those eight aforementioned All Blacks bounceback matches were against Australia at Eden Park. The combined scoreline? 77-13.

The venue factor will play a part on Sunday, but it’s been heartening to hear the Wallabies talk about it just being another regular-sized footy field rather than some incredible fortress which will act as a 16th man for the home side.

Of greater influence will be the New Zealand selections, after Ian Foster named a stronger side than the one deployed for Game 1. Anton Lienert-Brown will be a significant defensive upgrade in midfield on Reiko Ioane, as will Beauden Barrett at fullback.

Beauden Barrett: handy addition. (Phil Walter/Getty Images)

Losing George Bridge is a blow, but the All Blacks are not short on wingers. Caleb Clarke showed in his short stint last week his powerful running game will be of great threat to the Wallabies’ defence.

Even so, there are still weaknesses. Foster didn’t get full value from Jordie Barrett when he was stuck out wide last week, yet he’ll don the no.14 jersey once again in what is clearly a case of finding a spot for your best players rather than picking your best player in each position.

Caleb Clarke's performance to the Wallabies' defensive wobbles: Four talking points from Bledisloe 2

  Caleb Clarke's performance to the Wallabies' defensive wobbles: Four talking points from Bledisloe 2 Another game at Eden Park, another All Blacks victory. New Zealand are on the verge of retaining the Bledisloe Cup after their 27-7 win in Game 2. The result doesn’t come as a great surprise, but the scoreline was more dominant than the actual match. And that’s a decent place to start our Bledisloe 2 talking points. Wallabies closer than the scoreline suggests The Wallabies didn’t play like 20-point losers at Eden Park, with the painfully obvious exception of the 15 minutes after halftime.

The Jack Goodhue and Lienert-Brown centre pairing is strong indeed, but it’d look stronger still with Goodhue at outside centre and his partner at second-five, not the other way around.

The biggest weakness, though, is at lock. With Sam Whitelock ruled out as he goes through HIA protocols, it leaves Patrick Tuipulotu and Tupou Vaa’i as the starters with Scott Barrett on the bench. One of those second-rowers has all of 14 minutes’ Test experience, another hasn’t played a game of professional rugby since March.

It’s a clear area for the Wallabies to try to exploit, and you can be sure Hanigan, who played disruptor on a number of occasions this Super Rugby season, will be getting ready to spoil the New Zealand lineout.

So, a chance for the Wallabies to break that Eden Park hoodoo?

It is insofar as any Bledisloe game in Auckland is technically an opportunity to break that horror streak, but this match is once again the All Blacks’ to lose. They’ll expect improvement enough from the players they’ve retained from Game 1 to produce a victory, and that’s before you even consider the benefit adding Beauden Barrett and Lienert-Brown to the mix will provide.

But a victory isn’t the standard the Wallabies should be held to. Rather, just as we saw improvement last week compared to 2019, further progress this weekend should be expected, regardless of whether it ends in a win, loss or another draw.

It’s clear from their selections that’s the attitude of Rennie and his coaching staff. An improvement on the field as well, rather than the slide backwards which has so often followed recent promising performances against the All Blacks, will be proof indeed that this team is headed in precisely the right direction.

All Blacks by 20 means changes aplenty for Wallabies .
Two games into Dave Rennie’s tenure with the Wallabies, one thing is certain: if you’re not up to it, you’re out. Pete Samu and Folau Fainga’a wore that reminder after the first Bledisloe Cup match of 2020, after their performances were deemed to have not met the standard set by the new coach. The tactical change of reserve backrower (Rob Valetini for Liam Wright) and the injection of Jordan Petaia off the bench after his return from injury were the only other changes, but in a game widely considered as a success for the Wallabies, Rennie was still happy to swing that selection axe.

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