Top 15 of 2017: Wallabies break trans-Tasman drought

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

It's been a big year in rugby on many different fronts, so is taking a look back at the 15 biggest storylines of the year, based on the stories you read

#12: Wallabies break the trans-Tasman drought 

October 21, 2017 gave Australian rugby fans a glimmer of hope in a year that had offered only disappointment on so many levels, with a Bledisloe Test win.

Though the victory was quick to be put in perspective, the fact is it was the first Australian win over New Zealand in Super Rugby or Tests in 512 days, after a 0-26 record through the Super Rugby year.

The night held extra significance with the debut of the Wallabies’ Indigenous jersey, kicked off with a superb Welcome to Country, and the home farewell for former skipper Stephen Moore, who took to the stage with his family on his home ground for the last time.

It was a win all about the next generation, with Reece Hodge kicking the match sealer in one of his best performances in a gold jersey, adding a try to a reliable showing off the boot.

Flanker Jack Dempsey led the way for the Wallabies, with no. 8 Sean McMahon not far behind him, as Australia imposed themselves on their Kiwi visitors.

Young lock Lukhan Tui came off the bench and into a baptism of fire, making an impact with every involvement he had.

When Sam Cane knocked on and the final whistle blew, Wallabies fans could savour a moment they hadn’t in more than two years.

Players and coaches alike were quick to put the win firmly into perspective, with the Bledisloe Cup still already ensconced in Kiwi territory.

That perspective was only firmed by a rollercoaster Spring Tour, but a drop of optimism could surely be found at Suncorp Stadium.