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Thread: 'Call me old fashioned, or downright stupid, but I'm keeping the faith'

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    'Call me old fashioned, or downright stupid, but I'm keeping the faith'

    By Greg Clark
    Fox Sports rugby commentator
    November 05, 2009 It might have been a new venue but it was the same old result. The Wallabies, once again, squandered a half-time lead in losing to the All Blacks, and it's obvious now that the New Zealanders hold a huge psychological edge.
    Australia were leading at the break for the fifth time in the past six encounters, but New Zealand came out firing in the second half and Rocky Elsom’s men didn’t have enough answers.

    I think it’s also clear that Robbie Deans is carrying a few players who aren’t quite up to the required standard. The loss of Berrick Barnes is also a major setback. His organisational skills in the midfield were sorely missed.

    Adam Ashley-Cooper was one of Australia’s best again, but his preferred position is not inside centre. Deans had him defending at fullback when the All Blacks were feeding the scrum and then he’d revert to the midfield on attack.

    New Zealand scored two tries, exposing Australia’s poor backline defence. The sooner Stirling Mortlock returns to the side the better. I would be playing Ashley-Cooper at fullback with James O’Connor on the bench.

    I also believe George Smith should also be in the starting team. He is Australia’s most experienced campaigner, and he is wasted on the bench. The lineout was a mess and Australia can’t win a Grand Slam until it is fixed.

    The biggest positive out of Tokyo defeat was the scrum, and it should be able to match, or even better, its northern hemisphere rivals over the next four weeks. Will Genia looks more and more at home at scrum-half, while Digby Ioane was impressive in his comeback match on the wing.

    The biggest difference between Australia and New Zealand is Richie McCaw and Dan Carter. The Wallabies will come up against some good opposition in the UK this month, but they’ll be relieved that they don’t have to face up to the Kiwi duo again until next year.




    This week’s Test against England will see the Aussies face up to an old enemy in Jonny Wilkinson. And reports from Toulon, where he is playing his club rugby, suggest that he is now a better goalkicker than ever.

    He scored 15 of England’s 20 points in the 2003 Rugby World Cup final victory over the Wallabies, and all the points in their quarter-final win in 2007. If Australia present him with kickable penalty goals at Twickenham, they’ll pay dearly.

    The Wallabies have won three of the past four Tests against England, so they should be feeling reasonably confident. They’ve also won two of the past three at Twickenham, and they hold the Cook Cup. But they have dropped their past two games and have won just one of their past seven Tests.

    Understandably, many critics are saying they can’t win four on the trot judging by their recent record. Call me old fashioned, or just downright stupid, but I’m keeping the faith. Australia to win at Twickenham with the forwards leading the way up front.

    http://www.foxsports.com.au/story/0,...016959,00.html

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    Last edited by travelling_gerry; 05-11-09 at 22:40.

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    Why not

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    With a weakened England, I'd say we're in with a shot........but eminently capable of snatching defeat out of the jaws of victory!

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    C'mon the

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