Wallaroos soaking up Eden Park atmosphere

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

The Wallaroos were soaking up every second of their first outing at Eden Park on Friday.

Australia’s women were taking the chance to memorialise the occasion, with photos and videos of the turf.

The Wallaroos enjoyed the chance to get on to Eden Park. Photo: ARU MediaIt wasn’t all casual though, the players lining up some shots at goal and having a team talk a day out from their Test against the Black Ferns.

Captain Ash Hewson said actually being out on the field was a special one for the team.

“I think the girls are pretty amazed by the whole thing,” she said.

“We’ve got a few Kiwi girls in our team, so for them to be able to step foot out there on sacred ground’s pretty awesome for them.”

In just over 24 hours’ time, there won’t be much opportunity to soak up the moment, as they prepare to take on the best women’s team in the world.

Wallabies skipper Stephen Moore chats to Wallaroos lineout thrower Louise Burrows. Photo: ARU MediaThey had a taste of the physicality they’ll face against the Black Ferns earlier this week, with a 21-19 win over the Auckland Storm, and Hewson said it was the first-timers who impressed.

A lot of the girls aren’t used to the physicality that the girls play with over here and they didn’t take a backwards step so that was something we were pleased with,” she said.

“It’s definitely going to be a more physical game [tomorrow] and you’re playing the best team in the world.

We’ll definitely give NZ the respect they deserve, they’re the best team in the world .

“We’ve got the skill, commitment and had a good preparation to take it to them as best as possible.”

The Wallaroos-Wallabies double header on Saturday will be the first of its kind in Australian XVs and Hewson said it would be a major step for sport.

“Women’s sport in general’s come a long way, so to play alongside the men as a double header it just symbolises equality in sport.

“I think it’s great for the game and it’s great for women’s sport in general.”