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'More brutality': Wallabies keen on physical approach to continue New Zealand's woe

By AAP
Wallabies head coach Dave Rennie embraces Marika Koroibete of the Wallabies after winning The Rugby Championship match between the Australian Wallabies and the South African Springboks at Adelaide Oval on August 27, 2022 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Star Wallabies winger Marika Koroibete has called on his team to bring the “brutality” in an attempt to continue the All Blacks‘ downward spiral.

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New Zealand have lost their air of invincibility over the past year, with the All Blacks at one point slipping to fifth in world rankings after losing five matches in six.

Argentina, Ireland, France, and South Africa have tasted victory in the past year against the All Blacks, who are currently ranked fourth.

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Ireland in particular have crushed NZ’s fearsome reputation, winning three of their past four contests.

The Wallabies have the chance to join in on the act when they host the All Blacks in Thursday’s Bledisloe Cup opener in Melbourne.

“It’s just more brutality,” Koroibete said when asked about the key to beating New Zealand.

“Just contest on the ruck. Everyone across the park needs to bring that physicality, dominate the tackle and test their ruck.

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“Just bring aggression on Thursday. That’s what they don’t want. That’s what the South Africans and Argies (Argentina) did to them when they won. That’s what we need to bring.”

The All Blacks regained some of their aura earlier this month when they crushed Argentina 53-3 in Hamilton.

It came just a week after NZ had suffered a shock 25-18 loss to Los Pumas in Christchurch.

The Wallabies have also been inconsistent during the current Rugby Championship – with all four teams holding 2-2 records.

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Australia split their series against South Africa and Argentina, but are licking their wounds following a 24-8 loss to the Proteas in Sydney a week ago.

Kurtley Beale has been added to the Wallabies’ squad and has a chance to play against the All Blacks on Thursday.

The match will mark Koroibete’s 50th Test for the Wallabies.

Koroibete played for West Tigers and Melbourne Storm in the NRL, as well as featuring in Fiji’s national rugby league side.

But his switch to rugby union has proved a huge success, with the 30-year-old now considered one of the best players in the world.

Koroibete’s crunching try-saving tackle on South Africa’s Makazole Mapimpi two weeks ago is set to be replayed for years and even decades to come.

The powerful winger paid tribute to the various coaches who had given him a licence to roam on the field.

“It took me a couple of years to learn the game and to make the transition,” he said.

“I’ve just been learning from different coaches.

“Learning from some of the players as well around me, how they play the game in the same position as well. They help me develop as a player.”

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