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'We believe': Why Wallabies are ready to upset 'beatable' All Blacks

By Finn Morton
Australian players (L) watch New Zealand players perform the haka before the Rugby Championship 2023 and Bledisloe Cup Test match between Australia and New Zealand at the MCG in Melbourne on July 29, 2023. (Photo by William WEST / AFP)

After falling to a disastrous defeat in front of almost 84,000 fans at the MCG last weekend, the wounded Wallabies believe they can turn it around against a “beatable” All Blacks outfit.


Australia, who lost star props Allan Alaalatoa and Taniela Tupou to injuries at the ‘G, couldn’t convert pressure into points as they succumbed to a 38-7 defeat.

It was the Wallabies’ third defeat in as many Tests under legendary coach Eddie Jones. They risk falling to an 0-4 record if they fail to beat the in-form All Blacks in Dunedin on Saturday.

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Rugby fans and even bookmakers may have cast the Wallabies aside to practically near-impossible odds of a win, but the men in gold “believe” even if others don’t.

“We believe they’re beatable,” Wallaby Samu Kerevi told reporters. “They’re a class side and a great team but we believe in our gameplan, we believe in the squad and the talent that we have.

“We’ll go out there and put our best foot forward.

“Any team on any day can be beaten, we saw that at the last World Cup and even leading up to all these Test matches. We’ll just have to play our best game.

“You can’t let too much pressure off on a team like that and last week we just couldn’t do that well enough.”


The Wallabies started their new era under coach Jones with a disastrous defeat at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria last month, before returning home to face Argentina at Sydney’s CommBank Stadium.

But, at least on the scoreboard, that wasn’t a successful outing either.

Playing against Los Pumas, who were coached by former Wallabies boss Michael Cheika, Australia shot out of the blocks with an early try to Len Ikitau.

But the star centre left the field shortly after with an injury – a blow that has ruled Ikitau out of both Bledisloe Cup Tests. The Wallabies failed to fill the void that Ikitau left – going on to lose a thriller.

Australia fell to another defeat in their third and final Rugby Championship fixture, with the All Blacks overcoming a valiant performance the Wallabies.


But let the record show, as things stand, the Wallabies are 0-3 under coach Jones.

“After a few losses like that the team gets a bit hurt and gets a bit down but Eddie’s been so great in that space,” Kerevi added. “We understand it’s unacceptable to get those results.

“The way he’s come hard on us in terms of our own standards, building habits, and we can only do that through training. He’s been hard on us at training and it’s not just him, it’s more the squad and us being hard on each other.

“The byproduct of that will just be the results on the weekend.

“We play class sides every week, especially in this Rugby Championship. We’ve got Argentina, South Africa and the All Blacks of course. It’s always going to be a tough match for us but we’re looking forward to that and those challenges ahead.”

The All Blacks clash with the Wallabies at Dunedin’s Forsyth Barr Stadium kicks off at 2.35 pm (NZST) on Saturday afternoon.


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mitch 346 days ago

Lot's of changes to the AB side so this is a good chance for the Wallabies. Shutting down DMac will be the task.

Former 346 days ago

If the Wallabies manage to be somewhat competitive they should be grateful. Of course they have to gee themselves up but at some stage the bluster and posturing wears pretty thin.....

Andrew 346 days ago

LOL They really are irrepressible, the Aussies. Remind me of the Black Knight in Monty Pythons Holy Grail who when relieved of all his limbs still spat defiance that he would bite his enemy to death.

Bruiser 346 days ago

To qualify as a legendary coach you have to actually win something. Talking a lot doesnt qualify you

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William 3 hours ago
All Blacks vs England takeaways: Richie Who? Time for Cortez

Correct analysis of Perofeta’s bungling of the try opportunity Ben. Never ‘fixed’ Steward as he came across in defence and passed too early. Steward didn’t have to break his stride and simply moved on to pressure Telea. Never scanned the easier option of passing to the two supporting players on the inside. Beauden Barrett showed how it is done when he put Telea in for his try. Another point from the game is that the rush defence is hard to maintain as the number of phases increases. From scrums the defensive line only contains backs who all have roughly the same pace. Once forwards are involved, the defence has players with variable speeds often leading to a jagged line. It also tends to lose pace overall giving the attack more time and space. Beauden Barrett’s break to set up Telea’s try came because Baxter went in to tackle McKenzie and Steward went out to cover Telea. Barrett has a massive hole to run through, then commits Steward by passing as late as possible and Telea scores untouched. Another comment I would make is that Ben Earl is a good player and generally an excellent defender but he made three significant misses in the series, two of which led to All Black tries. Got stepped by Perofeta in Dunedin for Savea’s try, missed McKenzie in Auckland leading to what should have been a certain try being set up by Perofeta and was one of the tacklers who couldn’t stop Savea in the leadup to Telea’s first try. Perhaps he should contact Owen Farrell to pick up a few tips from ‘tackle school’.

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