All Blacks lose to the Wallabies

The All Blacks have lost their second test of the season 23-18 (the also lost one to the British and Irish Lions), in the third of the year against the Wallabies, in Brisbane. The ABs had won easily in the first test in Sydney but only just came out in front in Dunedin a week later.

This was a ‘dead rubber’, the Bledisloe Cup had already been won for the season, but it will have (or should have been) a severe blow to All Black pride. But overall it shouldn’t do them any harm, being reminded of the hurt of losing can help drive teams to win.

It was a big win for the Aussies, who have been under a lot of pressure this year but are improving. Good on them.

This is obviously an excellent result for the Wallabies and for Australian rugby. It is also good for the game worldwide.

I didn’t watch the game so I won’t comment on specifics of the game. It was too late for me to be bothered going out and watching it, and I’m still refusing to pay Sky exorbitant amounts for single games and also won’t pay a subscription for a lot of crap I don’t want just to be able to watch what I do want to see.

I see that the All Black business is going to offer pay-per-view internationally for the tour of Europe, starting shortly. Sky will supply the feeds via streaming. I could be tempted, but at $24.95 a game that’s still a bit steep. The Maori All Black games are more reasonable at $14.95 but I’m not as interested in watching them – with so much rugby on these days I’m a lot more selective in what I watch.

New Zealand 34 -Australia 17 – Rugby World Cup Final 2015

Half time New Zealand 16, Australia 3.

The two best teams in the tournament are contesting the final.

I hope that it’s a game worthy of the occasion and the winner is worthy of the title.

UPDATE AT FINAL WHISTLE: that was a great game worthy of the occasion and the All Blacks are worthy winners, but a lot of credit to Australia who looked down and out but came back to close the score right up. But the All Blacks finished too strongly.

A great finale to some great careers, including Richie McCaw, Dan Carter, Mana Nonu.

And a very commendable effort from Australian coach Michael Cheika – if he coaches the Wallabies through to the 2019 World Cup in Japan the Wallabies could be formidable.

New Zealand (All Blacks) versus Australia (Wallabies)

Not long now until the World Cup final. I think the All Blacks should be able to do it, I hope they do it, but the Wallabies will start with a good chance of toppling them.

Four years bragging rights at stake. It won’t be the end of the world if we lose but it would be disappointing.

Here’s hoping for success for New Zealand.

All Blacks


Rugby World Cup prediction

I’ve been thinking about the chances of an All Black win in the world cup. They must be clear favourites and I rate them a 70% chance of winning.

They have a number of advantages over Australia:

  • world cup final experience
  • record over the last four years
  • less injuries and attrition and through this tournament
  • fitness (the Wallabies looked jaded in the second half against Argentina)
  • pressure on David Pocock (smart tactic building him up as essential for Aus win)
  • Wallabies have had to play all their cards, All Blacks have something up their sleeves
  • All Black versatility (winning a run away quarter final and a close hard fought semi)
  • captaincy
  • coaching (although the Australian coach Michael Cheika has transformed the Wallabies)

Of course Australia still have the goods and the chance to win, but i think it will be harder for them and less likely.

A prediction breakdown :

  • 30% – a 11+ win to New Zealand
  • 40% – a 1-10 point win to New Zealand
  • 20% a 1-10 point win to Australia
  • 10% – a 11+ win to Australia

Sorry Aussies, I may be biased but I think that’s a fair reflection of their respective merits. But both teams are obviously in with a good chance.

All Blacks versus Wallabies

The Wallabies deserved to beat the All Blacks in Sydney last week, and deserved to winn the Rugby Championship.

The return match is in Auckland tonight.

Can the Wallabies back up their success and get their hands on the Bledisloe Cup?

Or can the All Blacks lift their game and retain their un beaten record at Eden Park that dates well back into last century.

The Wallabies have nothing much to lose, a one al series would be a good result for them, Two nil would be a major boost to their confisence..

If the All Blacks get well beaten again it wil raise big question marks about their World Cup chances.

This will be one of the more interesting rugby tests for quite a while.

All Black loss

The All Blacks lost to the Wallabies last night in Sydney. An All Black loss is bigs news these days as it doesn’t happen often.

This means Australia win the Rugby Championship and the Bledisloe Cup goes on the line next week in Auckland.

In a close game the Wallabies played very well, they finished the game better, and they deserved their win.

The All Blacks played well at times but made far too many errors, their defence was poor at times letting through what looked like soft tries and they didn’t deserve to win.

The referee was Wayne Barnes. One aspect of his performance could be a concern – at times his rulings on giving tackled players time to play the ball (or not giving them time before opposing players attacked the ball) seemed to favour the very proficient Wallaby loose forwards.

Playing to the ref is an important part of the game.

This is an important less for the All Blacks leading in to the World Cup.

The win is good for Australia, but in the bigger scheme of things it should also benefit the All Blacks – if they learn from their mistakes and learn, if they learn the strengths displayed by Australia, and if they learn that whoever a referee is and however rulings may go in their favour or against them that’s part of the game they have to deal with.

It’s disappointing to lose, and an aversion to losing is something that makes the Al Blacks formidable.

But I think this was a good test to lose when looking forward to the World Cup.

Making amends in next weeks test is important though. Two losses to the Wallabies in a row would be concerning.

All Blacks versus Australia

A great win for the All Blacks last night in the Rugby World Cup semi final.

Very well planned.

Very well executed.

Very well done All Blacks – players, coaches and support staff.

And good on the Wallabies, they did well to get as far as the semi and kept trying gallantly but this was one game and one RWC they just weren’t good enough.

A tribute to Wales

Overall this has been a cracker of a world cup despite disappointing tournaments from England and South Africa – and France despite them reaching the final, and Ireland, Scotland and Argentina being not quite good enough.

We’ll find out tonight which of New Zealand and Australia crash, they will probably mostly judged on this result.

I’ve enjoyed watching the second tier teams in most of the games they have played.

But I’d like to pay tribute to one of the shining stars of the tournament – Wales. They weren’t rated highly coming into the tournament, but they showed on the field that they had the preparation and attitude to make a mark, and they did.

Wales earned much rugby respect in New Zealand, deservedly. Many in the team contributed to this, notably up and coming flanker and captain Sam Warburton, and the team as a whole. Warren Gatland and his coaching team also deserve much credit.

I would have liked to see Wales playing in the final, against the All Blacks of course (through hope rather than expectation), but it’s not to be. A heavy pre-game shower of rain, a momentary tackle mistake, some off target kicking, and the French not quite playing badly enough to lose meant a very creditable but one week early exit for Wales.

Apart from the All Blacks the Welsh team is the only team in the 2011 Rugby World Cup that has not been outplayed in a game (just beaten by a narrow points margin a couiple of times).

I don’t usually feel empathy for the country of origin of my mother’s family, but I almost feel some pride in the boyos. Whatever – I salute some great sportmen and a nearly great team. I think this team’s time will come as long as they learn and grow from this experience.