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Thread: Match Report - Qantas Wallabies vs Italy in Canberra

  1. #1
    Immortal Contributor
    travelling_gerry's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
    Perth, Western Australia, Australia

    Match Report - Qantas Wallabies vs Italy in Canberra

    James O'Connor scores his
    first of three tries against Italy
    The Qantas Wallabies built on their impressive start to the season with a comprehensive 31-8 defeat of a brave Italian team at a chilly Canberra Stadium tonight.

    It was a dream first Test start for 18-year-old Wallabies fullback James O’Connor who picked up a hat trick of tries – two set up by flyhalf Matt Giteau – as the Men of Gold racked up five tries to one in front of an appreciative crowd of over 20,000.

    Giteau popped up a superb pass to right winger Lachie Turner on the Azzurri quarter line.

    With the Italian defence focused on the dummy run of captain Stirling Mortlock, Turner split the defence before floating a gentle pass to O’Connor who charged over untouched.

    Giteau’s conversion hit the post but the Wallabies were out to a 5-0 lead after just five minutes.

    Turner was in trouble five minutes later when he took a blow to his head from an accidental collision with Italian flanker Mauro Bergamasco’s hip, leaving the speedy NSW winger prone on the ground.

    Thankfully Turner got to his feet soon after.

    Wallabies scrumhalf Luke Burgess made a dangerous break a minute later but committed Italian defence snuffed out the chance.

    Clever kicking from Drew Mitchell and Giteau saw the Italians camped deep in their own territory and when the Azzurri did get down in the Wallabies territory mistakes saw the attacks come to little with obvious mis-communication between the scrumhalf Pablo Canavosio and Australian born flyhalf Craig Gower.

    The Wallabies were also dominant in the lineout and the Men of Gold scrum was also proving more than competitive.

    The dewy conditions however led to some spilled ball and the Wallabies adopting a much tighter game plan than the previous week against the Barbarians.

    But on 27 minutes, O’Connor was in for his second try. A stolen lineout by lock Nathan Sharpe set up a Wallabies attack deep in the Azzurri quarter.

    Flanker George Smith took a quick tap penalty and from the next ruck Burgess found Giteau running a cross field angle. The Wallabies flyhalf found a half-gap before popping a pass to O’Connor to pick up a double. Giteau again missing the conversion but the Men of Gold were up 10-0.[/COLOR][/FONT]

    Giteau was in for a try himself just minutes later after a break from Berrick Barnes. The Reds inside centre passed inside after he was tackled on the Italian quarter and the ball bounced off Giteau’s knee. The Wallabies flyhalf then followed up to outpace the defence and score under the posts.

    This time Giteau was successful with the conversion and the Wallabies were up 17-0.

    A long break from Canavosio after a Wallabies midfield kick saw Italy go very close before centre Mirco Bergamasco, brother of Mauro, was bundled into touch a metre short of the Men of Gold line.

    Italy went close again right on half time when South African born lock Quintin Geldenhuys was held up over the Wallabies line.

    And on halftime the Italians were finally on the board with former Brisbane club player Luke McLean landing a penalty goal. The teams went to the welcome warmth of the dressing rooms with the home team up 17-3.

    The Wallabies went to the bench at the start of the second half with Adam Ashley-Cooper coming on the right wing in place of the still groggy Turner.

    The Italians started the second half brightly with a moment of brilliance from Gower seeing the Wallabies line crossed.

    Gower took the ball deep from a ruck close to the Wallabies line. He charged down the blind side before flicking a neat flick pass inside to winger Kaine Roberston who crashed over for the Azzurri’s first try. McLean, like Giteau earlier, hitting the upright with his conversion.

    But the Wallabies increased their lead a few minutes later. Firstly Ashley-Cooper made a long break and was pulled down ten metres out from the Italian line.

    From the ensuing lineout Sharpe took the ball forward, before from the next ruck Mortlock ran a clever angle back across the Italian goalposts from a Giteau pass to break four Italian tries and score next to the post.

    It was a golden moment for the Wallabies captain, the only remaining Wallaby from the last time they played a Test in Canberra - against Argentina in 2000. Giteau converted and the Wallabies were out to 24-8.

    On 57 minutes Brumbies prop Ben Alexander came on for Al Baxter.

    Seconds later the Wallabies were in again with a superb team try. It began with a long break from Mortlock before hooker Stephen Moore took the ball on to under the Italian posts with a powerful charge.

    The ball then came right to O’Connor who shrugged off the tackle of Italian No.8, superstar and captain Sergio Parisse and the eighteen-year-old dove over for his hat trick – in just his second Test. Giteau converted and the Wallabies were coasting at 31 – 8.

    That was the signal for Robbie Deans to go to the bench bringing on Tatafu Polota-Nau for Moore, David Pocock for Richard Brown, Quade Cooper for Mortlock (with Cooper going to the right wing and Ashley-Cooper to outside centre) and Brumbies lock/flanker Peter Kimlin coming for his Test debut at his home ground for Dean Mumm. The Wallabies were impressive in the last twenty minutes but committed Italian defence held the deficit to just 23-points. The teams meet again next Saturday night at Etihad Stadium in Melbourne.

    Qantas Wallabies 31 (James O’Connor 3, Matt Giteau, Stirling Mortlock tries; Giteau 3 conversions) defeated Italy 8 (Kaine Robertson try; Luke McLean penalty) at Canberra Stadium. (Half time: Wallabies 17 – 3)

    Outcome information
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  2. #2
    Legend Contributor fulvio sammut's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    Porca la miseria!

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  3. #3
    Immortal Contributor jono's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
    turner can take a hit. i didnt think he was going to play on after his collision.

    well done wallabies. the scrum and the lineout stood up well. and there was better cohesion in the backs than last week.

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  4. #4
    Veteran pieter blackie's Avatar
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    Feb 2007
    Ellenbrook WA
    JOC!! well what can I say that will justify the way he play

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  5. #5
    Veteran mudskipper's Avatar
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    Oct 2008
    Looks like Jo"c enjoys crossing with Gits assistance at Canberra Stadium and whats more the Fans loved him .......

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