47 thoughts on “Rate the match: Wales v Australia

  1. Hmm. Aus looking frighteningly good. Wales and Eng really need to up there game for 2015. England need to up their game against Wales for sure. Will be worried going into 2015 if we don’t beat them home and away.

    1. Totally agree, it’s all come together for the Wallabies in the last few weeks. If England can’t at very least beat Wales at HQ in the 6N (which will, barring any warm-up game, be the last opportunity to do so before the RWC) then we are surely looking at the hosts not making the knockout stages for the first time. (Though with Japan 2019 it is unlikely to be the last.)

  2. Well, if Wales v Tonga last week was one of the worst games in a long time, this was one of the best. Australia’s backline were superb, and Wales’ not bad either. Once again though it was Rhys Priestland kicking the ball away instead of passing that lost Wales the game. I was even mostly impressed with Wayne Barnes, who must be, Nigel Owens aside, one of the form referees in the world at the moment.

    PS: Any chance of the BBC getting hold of Justin Marshall for the 6N? There should be a couple of weeks before Super Rugby starts, and it was nice to hear a different perspective on the game today.

    1. I thought Wales lost the match because they kept kicking for the corner instead of going for points at the end of the game. There was plenty of time and Australia was giving penalties away at that point. Wales missed out on at least six points.

      Though, the kicking was shocking too. I think the replacement scrumhalf was also guilty of kicking possession away. But, the damage was done and Wales were not really threatening to score.

    2. Good Christ no. Barnes and Owens are nothing special. Can’t ever respect inconsistency, and they have bags of it between them. Joubert is the best by a country mile. Still a gulf between the SH and NH and I’m tired of admitting it. They continue to beat us on home ground. England continue to be the only team that at least wins a test. Though I always expect France to come good at the World Cup, as they always do. You don’t kick the ball to Australia – period. What a self destruct. Not as self destructive as Ireland were against the AB’s though.

  3. Wayne Barnes the best? You need glasses like him watch the reply forward pass ball leaves his hands behind the line and catches it in front of line simple. Wayne Barnes blind or English idiot take your pick. One good thing is that the Welsh will stuff the Emglish in the six nations again.

    1. I don’t think you understand momentum Graham. The ball can go forward even if the pass is backwards

      Wales lost that because their forwards got done at the breakdown

      They also better hope that North stays fit for the 6 nations. Who will they pass the ball to if he doesn’t?

      As for playing England, well the Welsh always gee themselves up for that. If they don’t and their forwards play like today, England will win.

      Anyway, what are Wales going to do to get over their mental block when it comes to the southern big three?

    2. Wayne Barnes was appalling as usual. He asked the TMO to check the final Aussie try and then ruled it a good try BEFORE the TMO even spoke to him.

      Perhaps the assistant ref should have seen the forward pass but it was our old friend Roland Rat. No chance there then.

      Barnes has form with this sort of thing though with Wales-he refused to use the TMO in RWC 2011 to check Hook’s penalty kick was over and also ran in front of Welsh tacklers to block for the Boks 2nd try-result Wales lost by a point. Wayne Barnes you are a turd!

      Meanwhile the final Bok try in Cardiff this year was scored by a player a mile in front of the kicker and yet again no one saw anything.

      That said why the Welsh team try to ruck out of their 22 when a simple kick would suffice and save the 1st ten points that Australia scored. Until Wales have players with a bit of grey matter this sort of defeat will keep coming again and again.

      Priestland another classic cock-up at the end!!! What does Gatland see in him???

      1. That ball wan’t just lateral, or even a hair forward which is technically lateral really in my book. It was backwards, and a legitimate try. Australia would have lost it for themselves anyway. They had 2 other chances blatantly missed that they should have scored. Particularly Genia’s. Very unlike him to knock on like that. I think any reasonable Welsh fan would admit Australia were the better side. And what’s with the animosity towards Rolland. It was a tip tackle. It’s illegal. There’s no place for it in the game. Get over it. I would have not sent off Warburton but many refs _would_ have. Also, I would have no doubt that Rolland would send any player off in the same circumstances. He would be consistent at the very least imo, unlike the other muppets from the NH that ref. If all else fails and he actually does make an epic blunder, like giving a free try for the opposing team from nowhere – something almost guaranteed from the muppets Owens, and Barnes. Get over yourself – we will disown him as a French man. Like NH teams, the refs are behind the SH there also.

  4. Wales came up short once again…..played ok in the last 30 but game was lost by then. I am married to an Aussie and she laughes eveytime this fixture is played.

    Basically we don’t have big enough nuts to turnover the SH

  5. The difference was in the backs…given the injuries to Roberts and Davies particularly, I would bring Gavin Henson back into the fold. He could have made the difference today.

  6. Balls. Really, really sick of this Groundhog Day crap now. Don’t have a constructive appraisal of the match to give in afraid, just bored to death of giving neutrals an exciting game to watch. Nuts to the neutrals. One win. Just one win would be nice. Balls.

  7. Even though wales lost this game they didn’t really play that bad. Australias back line has finally clicked and it was just unlucky wales had to experience the auzzies best rugby in ages. Although wales have once again had a poor autumn interntational run I am not worrying for them when they fight for the six nations I believe they can make 3 title wins in a row and then go on to beating England and maybe Australia in the pool stages of 2015 to give a good shot at winning the world cup. By far the strongest northen hemisphere side.

  8. Struggling to understand what Gatland was doing. The Lions won because they played a power game against the aussies, with ten Welsh players. So what does he do today, tell his team to play it fast and loose which plays to the Aussie strengths. Made for a great game of rugby for the neutral, but just made the Welsh SH monkey even larger. Gats now criticising the ref for missing a forward pass. Looked exactly the same as the ab pass last week. Hands going backwards just. Gats trying to deflect attention from what he said was a must win game. Wondering if he is losing the plot.

    Thinking about the performance, the lineout was a shambles, and even the scrum struggled. You need to find another AJ, as when he isnt on the field Wales struggle. Back row apart from Faletau (who was immense) was poor. Once again better when Tips came on. Sorry but I will say it again. Lydiate is a shadow of the player he was. In the backline North was outstanding, I guess 1/2p was injured, and the rest of the cast were so so. Injuries definitely played their part, but that is part and parcel of international rugby. Just look at England.

    All in all not a bad performance from Wales overall, but mentally there must be some serious concerns heading into the RWC group stages.

  9. Further thoughts.

    Barnes was so so today. Got some things wrong IMO, but personally thought it all evened out over the game and ultimately it was a great game to watch and it wasn’t the ref that made the difference in the scoreline. Not sure what else you can ask a ref for. Owen still better.

    Wales have plenty of locks who can play international rugby well as did AWJ and Evans today, but what happened to the lineout. Hibbard superb round the park today – has kicked on from the Lions, but once again, who’s fault was the lineout. I don’t know, but you aren’t going to win many close games without securing good ball.

    Hooper was outstanding. Cooper was Cooper. Not enough pressure put on either by Wales. That seems to indicate back row problems as mentioned above.

    1. That’s my problem with Barnes, and Owens imo. They “”even”” things out. Just ref. the f*@$ing game. If you a screw a team over in a key situation and throw the game, it isn’t made up for by giving some meaningless penalty in a non critical part of the game. Say what you like about other refs, they make big calls on big moments. They don’t let a game pivot on a non event like a critically important turn over from being “off your feet”. Let me make this point clearly, as I truly believe what I’m about to type next.

      A good ref can make mistakes and affect the outcome of a match at clearly noticeable, pivotal, 50:50 decisions at key points of a game – 50:50 being the key here.

      A bad ref, “”balances”” his piss poor non-50:50 decisions at pivotal scenarios by making other piss poor judgements at either pivotal or non-pivotal moments.

      A good ref makes big calls and puts his balls on the line. He doesn’t pay as much attention to a friction 1/2 cm difference between a forward pass and not a froward pass.

      A good ref employs common sense: If it’s dubious to make a call for a borderline and minor infringement, it’s even more dubious to make a _pivotal_ call for a borderline and minor infringement, eg. at the end of a game….

      In summary. A good ref makes the big decisions, more than the little ones, and this also improves the flow of the game.

      A shit ref doesn’t have the balls to do that and spends the rest of the game “”balancing”” out his earlier blunders. The ref. situation is the bone of contention that will always piss me off about this game also.

      If refs can’t understand this, I’m left wondering what bloody reason I should be watching the 2015 world cup for. There’s just way too much of this shit.

      Is it really that hard for them to understand?? The South Africa Australia world cup game in 2011 is a perfect example. It wasn’t a forward pass, and if in doubt _ _ Don’t let a game hinge on a 50:50 forward pass _ _ which deprived SA of a try in that game.

      If it’s not a a bit enough infringement, then don’t let it affect the outcome of a World Cup…

      Refs: Can we not stand up and do the big stuff properly first and foremost, as the main priority.

      I hate to say it but this is one area where (football) Soccer is still lightyears ahead of rugby.

      If a corner kick is taken, one thing you will see is defenders strategically holding the bodies of strikers in the box, to prevent them from scoring a header. Why?

      Because they know the ref won’t easily let a big game hinge on giving a frikin penalty for holding an attacker in the box, and that’s the way it should be… The corner will get taken again maybe but you don’t give a bloody penalty for that….

      There’s way too many big calls being made in rugby for minor incidents which should only be warnings and not penalties.

      A 3-strikes rule for minor infringements might yield better refereeing. That would keep the muppets on the leash.

      C’mon guys. Are we really saying Australia should have been denied that try at the end? How would Welsh fans feel if they scored that try and it was disallowed for a 50:50 forward pass (minor). They’d be sick, and rightfully so.

      That’s the best I’ve seen Australia play this year, I must admit. Ireland would have never won that imo.

      1. Mitchell. Just to clarify, I didn’t think that Barnes deliberately evened out his mistakes, I think that they did even out over the course of the game. Examples are the aussies taking a player out in the air (just) – should have been a penalty, but Cooper’s yellow card was harsh in my opinion as I thought that he was reacting to what was going on rather than being cynical.

        I did say that his performance was so so, but what is important to me is that a ref doesn’t decide the outcome of the game. In this case he didn’t and it was the players that won and lost the game. I’m actually happy with that.

        As far as football goes, I actually think that rugby has it better. No backchat and cynical play penalised. If football refs actually booked players for backchat and gave penalties for holding in the box at a corner, you’d soon see those practices disappear, although I accept that it would be a mucky few months after the rule was introduced!

        1. “I think that they did even out over the course of the game. ”

          Wrong. It’s called entropy. Look it up. There’s no bias for things evening out in nature. It’s random.

          You’re just reinforcing my proposition that Barnes is a muppet, who meddles in the natural flow of a game.

          It’s the shit refs that always give you a ~”balanced” outcome. And there’s clearly nothing balanced about it. Especially if one decision has dramatically more of an effect than the other balancing decision.

          1. Mitchell. We can argue about the reffing all day and I don’t suppose we will agree, but the one thing I can say is that Wales were beaten by the better team on the day. It wasn’t the ref that decided the outcome. I have to say that I had a pop at the kiwi fans for moaning about reffing, illness, etc, but it’s possible that the Welsh fans may overtake them on this occasion. Gats is wrong about the pass and knows it – he’s just trying to deflect the press away from what was another disappointing defeat which he’d built up to be a must win game.

            1. There are plenty of Welsh fans who have nothing so say about the ref. why we lost

              – lacking quality midfield
              – poor tackling
              – daft decision making
              – Aus back row won
              – crap kicking, again

          2. I agree with Staggy and would say that you don’t seem to understand his point. He is not saying that refs delib balance things out, or that the end result is a “balanced” game. What he is saying is what most people observe – each time a ref makes a decision he has a chance of getting it wrong, usually a small chance. Wrong means “for” team A instead of team B. All he is saying is that, as you’d expect, statistically, due to an unbiased ref, he gets it wrong as much one way as the other because that is the way “chance” works.

  10. First up congrats to the Aussies, overall they deserved the win as they bossed much of the match & the backs were outstanding. Has to be said however that the final pass of the deciding try was forward & it was quite obviously forward, just need to look at the lines on the ground from where the ball was passed & where it was picked up, why Barnes went to the TMO & then just as he was getting a decision actually over-ruled it saying ‘there was no obvious transgression’ is a mystery ? I think it was obvious to anyone !!, would actually love to know what the TMO’s decision was ?.
    Yep, sour grapes I know & as I said the Aussies deserved it but it still grates to be on the end of a game deciding mistake.

    Roll on the 6N, should be interesting …..

    1. It amazes me that Rugby fans aren’t aware of the rules regarding forward passes. That pass was not even marginally forward or flat, it was easily the correct call

      Watch this video

  11. Wonderful game, only reason I can’t give it a 10 is Ire Vs NZ last week was even better.

    I thought the direction of Folau’s hands were backwards. If the guy in the middle watching the same replay as the TMO calls it, rather than waiting for the TMO to watch a load more replays to reach the same conclusion, I have no issue with this.

    Having defeated Australia in the summer playing ‘Warrenball’ I expected the Welsh to attempt to replicate that style of play. I guess missing first choice centres hinders that a bit and no scrums in the first half doesn’t give you the opportunity exert pressure there either.

    The rest of the rugby world should take note, the scrum is looking much better and Genia didn’t even play that well, more to come from Australia I think.

  12. Any argument about forward passes that talks about where the ball started and where it ended up shows a clear lack of understanding of rules. Ball position is irrelevant – if the player motioned backwards when passing then it’s legal. The pass looked fine to me. Ref didn’t decide that game, Wales lack of quality in the centres, a half fit Cuthbert/Halfpenny and some clueless running from deep decided that game.

  13. Gatland was right of course ….the try came from a forward pass!

    Only trouble the forward pass was Welsh and the referee gave George North’s first try without
    even reviewing the forward pass.

  14. I also expected Wales to do better against Australia’s 4th team…..after all the 1st team were playing in the AFL state of origin back home, 2nd team thrashing NZ at Wembley, 3rd team all injured and lying on the beach watching the white pointers…..still not bad for a 4th team….next stop ..take on the 49’ers under the bridge.

    1. Looks like Aus’s decent sledgers are also too busy to bother us so they sent you over instead riviera.

      1. Leagues a bit of a weird one though. Considering the enormous gulf between the top three sides and everyone else. You would think Australia NZ and England were the only three countries with pro rugby league teams…

  15. I’m surprised by the amount of people that can’t comprehend what actually constitutes a forward pass.
    If it leaves the hands going backwards, or flat; then the pass is fine. The pass to Tomane was fine.

    “Momentum” isn’t just a term used to describe a team on a bit of a roll. It’s a real life thing, as is it’s conservation. This means that without momentum being applied in the other direction (which, on a rugby pitch, can only be manifested as a tackler or a strong wind); the ball will continue travelling with the same velocity as the player who threw it.

    Who knew, right?

  16. What a superb match spoilt by the arrogant decision making of the referee. Such poor use of the TMO only serves to lessen the credibility of the officials, and create frustration and anger amongst all who follow rugby. I keep saying that football can learn a great deal from the way Rugby is managed on and off the pitch…………..seems I cannot be so confident of this stance. The Rugby League World Cup Finals are definately the template to emulate; their use of the TMO and their pass by pass analysis removes any doubt and is completely fair and removes frustration. TMOs get a grip and grow some ‘bottle’…..tell the referee if he is wrong…………legitimate pass my arse.

    1. The running commentary from the TMO as he checks each aspect/rule would be an interesting addition to union.

      We would have then heard him say “direction of the hands is backwards, pass is legal” or something along those lines.

  17. I can’t believe the number of people on a rugby blog that quite literally do not know the rules of rugby! Crazy.

    Feel for Wales a little bit, but from a neutrals point of a view it was just an incredible game.

    Wales issues seemed to be in the back row – massively lost that battle which is slightly worrying.

    Also the lack of depth showed today. There doesn’t appear to be adequate replacements for Adam Jones, Roberts or Davies; which is a bit worrying.

    I see Wales backs have watched England the last year and decided to copy the “throw it to Tuilagi” game plan by just throwing the ball to North. On the flip of that, North is a ridiculous player.

    1. Jacob, that round fella who came on late in the game at Tight Head looked half decent from what little I saw of him.

    2. North is a monster in attack, but still needs to sort his defence out. On a number of occasions he didn’t trust the man inside him to make the tackle and came in as well, leaving space on the outside for the Aussies to exploit – which they did very effectively

      Welsh flankers and second row were poor yesterday. Totally outplayed in the tight. Lydiate is not the man he was and Warburton went missing. Tipuric improved things. Alyn Wyn Jones and Ian Evans were ineffective – too slow to the rucks and often driven backwards in the tackle.

      Not enough scrums to judge the front row, although Jenkins seems a lot slower. Hibbard did ok but seems to get isolated easily on his runs.

      As for the line-outs, I think most of the blame goes to the jumpers. There was one Welsh line-out when Hibbard threw in and absolutely no-one jumped – god know what went on there

      1. Agree with you Blub, it was Samson Lee, good player. But he is still very far from being in Adam Jones league.

        Agree with Pablito on the pack yesterday; although I said back row in my post, I agree that the locks were not great either. I do want to exclude Faletau from my comments though, really rate him. Lydiate just looked so poor IMO, so far off the pace.

        Line outs were definitely a mess; not sure what went on but it certainly needs to be addressed.

  18. Thanks heavens for some Welsh sense from Brighty. In any sport, and any team, it is very bad form to blame the ref for the result. Further, it is entirely counter-productive.

    Very surprised to see Gatland criticising in this way. Not because it is bad form to criticise refs, but because it sends out a terrible message to his team. If it wasn’t for the ref, then we would have won?

    We don’t need to improve, we just need a better ref????

    I really, really hope that he is taking the Mourinho approach here, in that he is winding up the press, the public, and everyone else outside of his squad, whilst reminding the insiders as to why they really lost the game, and what they are going to do, to get better.

    Bit of a soap box moment now, but if the head coach of Wales and the Lions can feel justified in blaming the ref what message does this send out to all the junior coaches, parents and supporters up and down the country, and then what message does this send to the kids playing the game?

    “It’s not your fault darling, its that silly ref”

    Yesterday, in my kids game, all the boys wanted to talk about at half time was the errors that the ref had made. Not the missed tackles, dropped passes, uncontested rucks etc, but the ref. The real horror here is that they feel entirely justified in doing so.

  19. Coaches whinging about the ref is certainly bad form and something creeping in from football we could do without .I excuse the fans in Cardiff though on Saturday night who were calling Barnes parentage into account (yours truly not excluded ) as if you can’t follow your team with a certain amount of biased emotion then what’s the point of going ,we aren’t all capable of sitting there as if we were checking our monthly bank statements .

    Looking at the highlights it’s clear that the Aussies in fact blew a few chances so they could have been out of sight in any event . I also have absolutely no doubt that if NZ had been playing against 14 men with 5 minutes to go with a penalty to the corner they would have won .

    Australia look nothing like the team that played England and at the moment you would put them favourites to top that World Cup group . So that would leave Wales and England fighting for the second place which to be frank emotionally might well suit us .Might be worth buttering up my relatives who are members of English clubs and taking out a second mortgage to get tickets for that match .

  20. Hope the ref enjoys his free holiday in Brisbane. He was good in the first half but had a shocker in the second half with several poor decisions and the linesman, who must have seen some of it, and the TMO didn’t help him out.

    When you see one of the Aussies making the forward pass sign as the replay is shown on the big screen it speaks volumes.

  21. I was of the understanding that a scrum was deliberatelly wheeled if one side of it went back and the other side stood its ground or went forward. A forward pass is if the ball travels forward as in relation to the pitch from a pass or touched by the upper body. The referee takes advice from a second official eg. a forward pass is made and if that is not enough he can refer to the fourth official the TMO for his close up analasys to give his final disission. Advantage is normaly played for short time if there is foul play is made. The Wales v Australia game was a brilliant game. Up there with the Ireland v New Zealand game but the Wales v Ausralia game was spoilt by another arrogant official who think they are more important than the men who put their bodies on the line and provide us with fantastic rugby entertainment. I am Welsh and proud of it. Thank you Australia for a great MATCH

    1. “A forward pass is if the ball travels forward as in relation to the pitch from a pass or touched by the upper body” – that may well be your opinion but it is certainly not the law of the game.

    2. Ref!!!!!! (I do hope that is an ironic nom de plume)

      In addition to the wise words from Brighty. The TMO does not make the final “dicission”. The on-field ref is the sole decision maker on the pitch.

      He can of course – under certain circumstances – take advice from another official, but that is all that it is – advice. Fortunately, it is usually the case that the TMO knows the same laws as the ref, so looking at the same replays, they can often make the same determination.

      There is no time element to “Advantage”, and not arrogantly, but factually, the ref is sole judge of whether or not a team has gained an advantage. The Advantage ends only when the ref determines that the non-offending team cannot gain an advantage.

      It may be a little more contentious, but I am quite happy to watch the ref at a game, in fact I do enjoy taking on the ref-link, and hearing him too. Don’t forget that the game doesn’t happen without a ref, but it can certainly continue with reduced numbers of players :-)

      1. Some wag at the Wales v Aus game had a sign offering two-way reflinks for fifty quid. My hand was in my pocket before I realised the joke. It would be such an amazing idea, but a little bit rough on the ref.

  22. 7months on; Was at the Aussie game with an Aussie friend and I am still bemused by Wayne Barnes decision to allow final try by Tomane…. Conclusion: Is rugby more corrupt than soccer?

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