Fine margins costing Wallabies lineout

The Rugby Championship
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

It’s the ‘one percent’ letting the Wallabies down in their lineouts, rookie lock Adam Coleman says.

Coleman made his run-on Test debut on Saturday night shouldering the responsibility of calling the set play, with usual Rob Simmons left out of the squad.

The lineout was a problem for Australia. Photo: Getty ImagesThe 24-year-old said he wasn’t carrying any extra burden, despite the more prominent role in the team.

“I felt comfortable calling the lineout,” he said.

“I've called at Super Rugby. Unfortunately, we weren't clinical enough today and we didn't give our backs a platform to launch off.

“That's something we're going to continue to work, continue to work on that during the week from last week so just keep working on it.”

Coleman said Australia’s lineout woes came down to the finest of margins, after another match in which New Zealand was able to steal four of the Wallabies’ throws.

“I don't think there's one specific [area to work on], it's that one percent in three or four lineouts that are just one person being that one percent off and then they [the opposition] get an opportunity to get into the lineout."

The partnership forged between Coleman and Kane Douglas was the sixth new second-row starting duo this season and the Force lock said he would be keen to see that develop.

“That's the first time I've played with Kane and I enjoyed it,” he said.

“Obviously the more we play together the more we'll get comfortable with each other and how we're playing but we've been training together for months now so we feel comfortable with any lock combination that comes into the team.”

Adam Coleman brought intensity to the Wallabies. Photo: ARU Media/Stu WalmsleyThe All Blacks have exploited that one percent in the sides’ past three match-ups and skipper Kieran Read said there wasn’t any complexity to it.

“When you turn up to a lineout it’s just about looking at what they're going to throw at us,” he said.

“We just try and get up in the air and put as much pressure as we can,” he said.

“We've got some pretty tall timber with Brodie and Sam and really want to at least put some pressure on, I think.

“A game like this, you want to try and limit their opportunities and we do that as best we can.”

Adam COleman was yellow-carded in the Wallabies loss. Photo: Getty ImagesWallabies captain Stephen Moore said in the post-match press conference that he hadn’t lost confidence in the lineout, but conceded there was plenty to work on.

“I think we just need to use our options that are going to give us ball in space,” he said.

“They're obviously very good defensively and there are some things we need to do that's going to help us improve there.

“There's a lot of things that go into it, timing’s obviously important and there's other things as well so when we review the game, we'll come up with a plan for the next Test.”

The Wallabies take on the Springboks in Brisbane on September 10, in their third Rugby Championship match, while the All Blacks face Argentina.