Nothing changing for Wallabies in final week

Tue, 27/10/2015, 01:00 am staff
by staff

Little is changing for the Wallabies ahead of the Rugby World Cup final.

Australia sits third in most tries scored through the tournament, averaging 4.43 per game, behind New Zealand and Argentina.

Most telling about their balanced approach, though, is that they are also topping the tackle count, with 726 for the tournament, an average of 103 per game, and conceded just 84 points through the tournament.

They made 142 tackles to the Pumas’ 59 on Sunday but also ran in four tries to claim a semi-final win.

Wallabies number eight David Pocock said the balance between attack and defence was an important one to strike.

“It's (defence) an important part of the game,” he said.

“We’ve seen how tight a lot of the games have been. I think at the moment it’s pretty important to get the balance between the two.

“We put a lot of work into that. On the weekend both held up really well and we’ll be doing that again.”

Attack coach Stephen Larkham echoed Pocock’s sentiment, saying the focus had to be split evenly between the attacking and defensive areas of the game.

“I guess this tournament has been a little up and down in terms of attack and defence,” he said.

“I want to make sure the whole team performance is good and I thought it was on the weekend.

“There were lots of passages - I think the longest passage was 4min and 30sec, which is the longest passage I’ve ever been involved with and it was combination of both attack and defence.

“We scored a couple of good tries but I think defence is going to be the key.”

Wallabies defence coach Nathan Grey said the side could take confidence out of their defensive performances through the World Cup so far.

“The guys have been impressive throughout the tournament,” he said.

“They’ve been very consistent with the way they’ve been defending. They should take confidence out of it.”

While their tackle count was high on Sunday, Grey said there was plenty of improvement required after the Pumas beat them in line breaks.

“We want to make sure defensively we’re a lot better in terms of cutting down opportunities for them,” he said

“Argentina were able to get a few line breaks on us so that’s worrying as a defensive coach.

“You don’t like giving those up but in terms of the guys scrambled exceptionally well.

“It doesn’t take talent to get off the ground and get back on the defensive line and that’s something the guys really pride themselves on.”

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