Player ratings: Oz get out of jail
Sat, 16 Jun 2012 12:34
A late Mike Harris penalty saved Australian blushes as they snatched a dramatic last-gasp victory over Wales in Melbourne on Saturday.
The Wallabies battled to breach a stern Welsh defensive system, but showed good patience taking the ball through numerous phases and ultimately showed good composure to seal the victory.
They will be concerned at the way that Wales were able to repel their advances, but will be suitably happy with the determined attitude they showed to play hard for 80 minutes.
We rate the Australian players:
15 Adam Ashley-Cooper:
Enjoyed the space at the back and stepped well, but also got caught out of position at times as the Welsh looked to peg the Wallabies back in their own half.
14 Cooper Vuna:
Ran hard and broke a few tackles early on, but battled under the high ball and put his team under immense pressure when he was shown a yellow card for tackling the man in the air.
13 Rob Horne:
Some direct running when he got the chance but also caught behind the gainline at times amongst his limited opportunities.
12 Pat McCabe:
A highly physical display, he was solid on defence and straightened the line well although he did not create too many opportunities for the players outside him he delivered what was expected of him.
11 Digby Ioane:
Looked a threat every time he touched the ball, with a few breaks underlining just how dangerous he can be in some soace. Got involved running inside the halfbacks often and covered his opposite number well.
10 Berrick Barnes:
A superb all-round performance, he varied his game very well, mixing some intelligent kicking with slick distribution and a few telling runs. He showed a touch of class drifting wide and throwing a dummy to create his team's only try and was depednable off the kicking tee before being hampered by the cramp that forced him off the field.
9 Will Genia:
A busy display although he did not make the same impact as last week his kicking was effective and he produced quality service behind the pack busy but a sloppy pass gave Davies the opportunity to score early in the second half.
8 Wycliff Palu:
Showed what a powerful runner he can be getting up a head of steam in the first half but was also caught offside and missed a crucial tackle on George North, allowing the big wing over the tryline so he still has some work to do before he is back to top form.
7 David Pocock:
A determined effort from the captain who put Wales under serious pressure at the breakdown and gave everything right until the end.
6 Scott Higginbotham:
Carried the ball well and got over the gainline regularly as the Wallabies bashed away at the Welsh defence. A committed performance characterised by hard work.
5 Nathan Sharpe:
The veteran always does the basics well, and gave another whole-hearted performance. With James Horwill out for the rest of the year it will be interesting to see if he keeps playing beyond next week when he plans to retire from Test rugby.
4 Rob Simmons:
He is growing in confidence at this level and produced another solid game despite not making a massive impact.
3 Sekope Kepu:
Got involved in open play and worked hard on defence, making some telling tackles. Was put under pressure at times by Gethin Jenkins in the scrums but battled hard to the end and did not shirk any responsibility.
2 Tatafu Polota-Nau:
Flew into the collisions in his usual style and gave the Wallabies a hard edge up front but had some issues in the line-outs and did not look as polished as usual.
1 Benn Robinson:
Strong scrummaging performance and also carried the ball up well but fell off a few important tackles which put his side under pressure.
16 Stephen Moore:
(On for Polota-Nau, 50th minute)
Struggled to get the timing right in the scrums, which gave Wales the upper hand in this area, and struggled to assert himself in open play.
17 Ben Alexander:
(On for Robinson, 65th minute)
Gave away a penalty at a scrum immediately after coming on, but got stuck in as the Wallabies staged their late fight back.
18 Dave Dennis:
(On for Palu, 54 mins)
Added some vital physicality and made an impact in an impressive showing.
19 Michael Hooper:
(On for Simmons, 69 mins)
Knocked the ball on twice shortly after coming on which put his side on the back foot, but otherwise played with characteristic intensity in hos short time on the pitch.
20 Nic White:
21 Anthony Fainga'a:
(on for Vuna, 70th minute)
Showed a good determined attitude when he got the opportunity, making some telling contributions on attack and defence.
22 Mike Harris:
(On for Barnes, 72nd minute)
Showed good composure to land the kick to win the game and did little wrong in his limited time.
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