The Wallabies will be pleased with a first hit out in which they were never under threat, defended impressively and weren’t even required to show much in attack. Taking the free hits that World Rugby’s rule interpretations is handing out, David Pocock scored two 2015 vintage Brumbies backline moves through driving mauls in the first half. Foley had his kicking boots on and the first half ended 18-3.
The second half looked good to start with, sustained attacking pressure led by a dangerous looking Folau resulted in Sekope Kepu slicing through the line from 10 out. But from there the wheels fell off spearheaded by four straight lineout losses on the Wallabies own throw, including one five metres out to secure a bonus point try. The concept of ‘finishers’ to take the game up a notch had quite the opposite effect.
Australia 28 (David Pocock 2, Sekope Kepu tries; Bernard Foley 2 cons; 3 pens)
defeated Fiji 13 (Ben Volavola try; Nemani Nadolo conversion, 2 pens)
(18-3 half time)
INCIDENTS OF NOTE
The Wallabies defence; the line-speed and hits were there for the full 80, denying Fiji the chance to get into their rhythm. Great commitment shown
The refereeing – while the driving maul is clearly fully sanctioned regardless, suddenly Glen Jackson decided to penalise the Wallabies for going off their feet at the ruck in the second half. Watch the last 10 minutes of Japan versus South Africa and see if you can find a ruck Japan didn’t seal off.
The Millennium Stadium in Wales full of poms cheering for Fiji by singing Swing Low Sweet Chariot.