Deans: 'Bring on the Boks'
Sat, 15 Sep 2012 15:41
This group is really going to enjoy travelling now, being able to go to Pretoria
Wallaby coach Robbie Deans said his team is looking forward to taking on the Springboks in Pretoria in a fortnight.
Australia fought off a spirited Argentinean side to claim a narrow four-point (23-19) victory on the Gold Coast on Saturday.
In the first ever Test at the venue 22,278 spectators turned out for a game that started slowly but finished with a flurry and a last ditch push by the Pumas for their first victory on Australian soil since 1983.
Deans said his side showed "good character" to come back in the way they did.
After trailing 3-6 at half time the Wallabies found themselves trailing by two tries within 12 minutes of the second half starting.
The Pumas crossed for the first try of the match in the 50th minute through Tomas Leonardi and then followed up with another just two minutes later from Julio Farais Cabello.
Unfortunately the Pumas couldn't add the extras, however in the 58th minute added three more points from a penalty goal to lead by 13 points.
The flurry of attacking forays by the Argentinians seems to spark the Wallabies to life and after a number of phases a hard running Pat McCabe crossed to get the Wallabies back within six points with 20 minutes to play.
The Gold Coast crowd didn't have to wait long for a second Wallabies try after new scrum half, Nick Phipps spotted a gap on the blindside and after missing three tackles released man-of-the-match Digby Ioane.
Barnes added the extras and earned himself a rest after some solid work at fullback.
The Wallabies went further ahead in the 79th minute when substitute Kurtley Beale slotted a long range penalty goal from close to the side line.
With just a minute left on the clock the Pumas had one last chance to steal a victory after Tatafu Polota-Nau knocked on from the kick off, however some solid defending saw the Wallabies register their second win of the Rugby Championship.
"We had some opportunities to put the game away a few times and we didn't, but we fought back and that's a credit to our guys," Deans said.
"I wouldn't underestimate what we had here, I mean the Argentinians are a good side, no team has played with consistency against them.
"I don't know what the score was, but I think we might have put more points on them in this match than any other team in the Championship.
"They're a great side, a side that plays with a lot of pride and a lot of ambition.
"They have a lot of potential and this experience is going to be good for them, not just this team but players back in Argentina will see what these guys are doing and they'll want to be part of that dream and the whole country will be much better for it.
"This group is really going to enjoy travelling now, being able to go to Pretoria, it's a good place.
"Nick Phipps was part of the performance to help us get out of the hole we were in.
"It wasn't the perfect performance but he'll be better for it and he'll be a better player next time he steps out."
Wallaby captain Nathan Sharpe, who looked to have become the latest victim of the captaincy curse when he went down injured in the first half, spoke about his team's structure and the way they stick to the things they needed to do.
"When we were down and we were in the huddle I reminded them that this was a test of character and that we needed to stand up," Sharpe said.
"I thought our set piece was pretty good tonight we didn't let the Argentinians get a roll on so we're pretty happy with that.
"I think collectively as a team they attack the ball at the breakdown, they know when to attack and flood the breakdown and they do it well.
"Their low tackling is very good and their set pieces from their line out and scrums are very good as well.
"They bide their time and they set themselves up, I mean we saw what happened in that two to three minute spell when they put it together and they are dangerous."
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