Wallaroos preparing for Scottish 'unknown'

Tue, Oct 11, 2022, 3:20 AM
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
Wallaroos coach Jay Tregonning and captain Shannon Parry spoke after their opening match of the Rugby World Cup.

The Wallaroos are preparing for a fresh challenge as they head north to Whangarei for two key Rugby World Cup fixtures.

Jay Tregonning's side will face Six Nations sides Scotland and Wales to round out their group stages, needing to win at least one to book their place in the quarter-finals.

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The Wallaroos have only played either side in World Cup action, last playing Scotland in 2002.

For context, the 30-0 victory came nearly 12 months before flyer Bienne Terita was born.

It's a challenge the Wallaroos and assistant Scott Fava are embracing after a promising opening half against the Black Ferns.

“We’ve got to see Scotland as an unknown,” Fava told Rugby.com.au.

“We haven’t played this team or any Northern Hemisphere team from the Six Nations (in a long time) and they play a different style of footy so we need to make sure we’re not complacent about our opposition.

“We need to be on point with our execution against a team that will play different to the ones we’ve played this year. It’s a challenge and Scotland would’ve looked at this game against us as their game they want to target.

“From the start, we need to be replicating that game plan from New Zealand and make sure that we’re sustaining that for the full 40 minutes in each half. If we’re doing that, I know the confidence within the group will get us over the line.”

Front-rower Emily Robinson is one of few in the squad who have faced the unique set-piece-focused style the Six Nations sides bring.

In 2017, the Wallaroos held off hosts Ireland in the 5th-8th playoffs, which qualified them for this year's event.

The Wallaroos veteran is confident they have what it takes to neutralise their threats.

“Northern Hemisphere teams love their set-piece game and I’m sure we’ll spend plenty of time on that this week,” Robinson added.

“We’ll play how we want to play. We’ve reviewed them a fair bit and we know how we need to defend in terms of how to stop them from getting that roll on.

“I feel like we’ve got the tools to stop them.”