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By ARU Media Unit
The Australian Schools finished their tour yesterday with a memorable 16-14 win over New Zealand Schools in Auckland.
The victory sees the Australians finish the tour with three wins and two losses.
The Australian Schools side brought a wealth of passion and determination to their final game to claim only their second-ever win on New Zealand soil and their fourth over the Kiwis in six years.
In blustery conditions at Auckland Grammar, the game commenced with high intensity and the drama of the match continued throughout the entire 80 minutes.
The Australians ran into the wind in the first half and were rewarded early on with a penalty in the third minute allowing Tom Wilson the opportunity to get his team on the board.
As the game progressed Australia had the majority of possession and territory with both Mitch Whitely and Tom Staniforth working hard at the breakdown to stifle any New Zealand attack.
In the seventh minute fullback Jonah Placid beat the first defender and drew another before offloading to Andrew Robinson to score 15 metres in. The conversion was unsuccessful and Australia led 8–0.
It took the New Zealanders only five minutes to reply in the 12th minute with a successful penalty.
The New Zealanders ended the half on top of the tight tussle with a successful penalty kick to Broc Hooper in the 28th minute, followed by a try by Sului Etimani to give the home side an 11-8 lead at the break.
Front row Aaron Pleash received a yellow card for repeated Australian offences in the second half, but the Australians were able to hold the Kiwis out while defending with 14 men.
Australia locked the scores at 11-11 with another successful penalty goal by Wilson, but Hooper kicked his side ahead with another penalty goal four minutes later to give New Zealand a 14-11 lead.
The breakthrough for Australia came from a stroke of brilliance by flyhalf Jake McIntyre, who kicked across field to Jonah Placid.
Placid was able to regather the ball and ground it over the try line under extreme pressure from the New Zealand defenders.
The unsuccessful conversion attempt by Australia setup a tense final 10 minutes.
The home side spent the final five minutes pressuring the Australian line and retained possession for several phases but twice conceded attacking penalties.
The second penalty on full time allowed the Australians kick the ball into touch to end the match and begin celebrating an historic victory.
Australian Schools 16 defeated New Zealand Schools 14
Australian Schools tries - Andrew Robinson, Jonah Placid.
Australian Schools penalty goals – Tom Wilson.
New Zealand Schools try - Sului Etimani.
New Zealand Schools conversion - Broc Hooper.
New Zealand Schools penalty goals – Hooper (2).
Bronze Boot Awards:
Australia – Jonah Placid, Toowoomba Grammar School.
New Zealand – James Tucker, St Bede’s College, Christchurch.
Australian Schools side vs New Zealand Schools
Ipswich Grammar School
St. Joseph’s College
Canberra Grammar School
St. Augustine’s College
Anglican Church Grammar School
St. Ignatius’College (C)
Alstonville High School
Farrar Memorial Agricultural High School
St. Joseph’s College, Nudgee ©
The Scots College
St. Mary MacKillop College
Toowoomba Grammar School
St. Joseph’s College, Nudgee
Rowville Secondary College
Brisbane State High School
Brisbane Boys College
The Kings School
Central Coast Grammar School
Knox Grammar School
Australian Rugby Union
S and C
Dr Michael McLean
Australian Schools Tour Schedule 2012
Fijian President’s XV 18 def. Australian Schools 9
Prince Charles Park, Nadi – 3:30pm (FJT)
Fijian Schools 12 def. by Australian Schools 29
Churchill Stadium, Lautoka – 3:30pm (FJT)
New Zealand Barbarians 24 def. Australian Schools 5
Sacred Heart College, Auckland – 12:45pm (NZST)
Samoan Schools 7 def. by Australian Schools 80
St. Paul’s Collegiate School, Hamilton – 2:30pm (NZST)
New Zealand Schools 14 defeated by Australian Schools 16
Auckland Grammar, Auckland – 2:45pm (NZST)