The Australian Schools side has suffered a defeat to New Zealand Barbarians, going down 39-21 in Wellington on Tuesday.
The team was left to rue missed opportunities with a red card given to the Australian Schools flyhalf in the second minute, which proved to be a decisive moment in the match.
Australian Schools Head Coach Steve Philpotts was disappointed with the result.
“Losing our flyhalf so early in the match was not ideal for our game plan, so we had to adjust to that.”
“We were a bit shell shocked in those first ten minutes but we remained patient and put ourselves in good positions to capitalise on the Barbarians’ errors.
“I am very proud of the way we tried to play for the full 70 minutes, considering we were a man down for most of the match.
“We will review this game and get ready for New Zealand Schools knowing that we can attack well when we create space.”
Australian Schools next match will be against New Zealand Schools on Saturday 4 October at 11.40am on FOX SPORTS 3 & 3HD.
Australian Schools suffered an early blow with flyhalf Jordan Jackson-Hope red carded for a dangerous tackle in the second minute of the match.
Despite the early blow, Australian Schools registered the first points of the match through scrumhalf Harrison Goddard, who converted a penalty from 40 metres out to give the Australians a 3-0 lead.
New Zealand Barbarians’ first points came through flyhalf D’Angelo Leuila, who darted around the covering Australian defence to score underneath the posts, taking the score to 7-3 in favour of the host team.
A further penalty to the Barbarians side allowed them to extend their lead to 10-3 through the boot of D’Angelo Leuila.
Despite missing their playmaker, Australian Schools continued to throw around the ball as they looked to attack. They were rewarded with a second penalty, which Oakhill College’s Harrison Goddard converted. However, New Zealand Barbarians were quick to extend their lead with a penalty from the sideline through D’Angelo Leuila, taking the score to 13-6.
The Australian Schools side patiently worked their way back into the first half through some tactical play which allowed Harrison Goddard to kick his third penalty.
The pace of the Barbarians and the extra man advantage began to take its toll as Losi Filipo scored a try in the corner to finish the first half with the score at 20-9 in favour of New Zealand Barbarians.
The second half started well for Australian Schools. The young team applied pressure to their opposite backs with great runs from Ned Yeomans and fullback Julian Fulivai, who combined well in the 47th minute to create a break in the midfield. A patient effort from the Australian forwards created enough space for Fulivai to score a try underneath the posts.
A successful conversion by Goddard brought the scores to 20-16.
New Zealand Barbarians replied with a try through fullback Caleb Makene, which was followed by another try to New Zealand winger Losi Filipo, taking the score to 34-16.
The Australian Schools side refused to give in with 16 year old Harrison Goddard scoring off the back of an Australian scrum to bring the deficit to within two converted tries for Australian Schools, 34-21.
The tiring Australian defence was unable to hold off New Zealand in the final moments of the match with a late try ensuring New Zealand’s domination on the scoreboard, taking the final score to 39-21.