Wallabies head coach Michael Cheika refused to criticise referee Ben O’Keeffe and insisted there would be no excuses after his side were beaten 30-6 by England in a match packed with controversial incidents.
Although the final scoreline of Saturday’s match suggested England had dominated at Twickenham, the reality was very different, with Australia retaining realistic hopes of victory prior to three tries in the final eight minutes.
Either side of first-half yellow cards for skipper Michael Hooper and Kurtley Beale, the Wallabies saw two tries chalked off following TMO reviews, while they were also frustrated by Elliot Daly’s breakaway score for England that was eventually awarded after multiple replays had been viewed to determine whether the ball had gone out of play.
Cheika was visibly frustrated on a number of occasions during the match, but kept his cool after the game when invited to comment on the various incidents.
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He told Sky Sports: “Ifs don’t count. We’re looking to make a no-excuse culture in our footy and we’re not making any excuses.
“Sometimes things go against you and you’ve got to learn from those [things]. It didn’t go our way today. We’ve had some days where it has gone our way and you’ve got to be able to own all of that, not look to deflect it on to anybody else.”
Asked if all of the debatable calls by the match officials had been correct, Cheika replied: “I think it’s irrelevant, at the end of the day, because we had chances. We got ourselves back in it, against whatever adversity there was, and then weren’t clinical enough in those moments to take advantage of that determination we showed.
“It wasn’t a blowout – that’s the way the score looked, everyone knows what happens on the day.
“I thought we showed a lot of courage and a lot of determination to stay in against a fair bit of adversity. And then we weren’t clinical enough in the key moments.”
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