Australia beat Wales despite a 21-point disadvantage.

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By Creative Media News

It appeared that Wales would close their terrible year with a victory, but this loss will be the most difficult of the nine they have suffered this year. After nearly an hour of confident, even flawless rugby, they held a 34-13 lead with 25 minutes remaining.

Even with 15 minutes remaining, they led 34-18, but in the final quarter of an hour, they collapsed, giving three tries, including two to Australia’s talented young winger Mark Nawaqanitawase, and losing two players to the sin bin.

Captain Justin Tipuric tripped Pete Samu and was sent off first, followed by Ryan Elias with five minutes remaining for taking down a lineout, resulting in a penalty try.

Australia beat wales despite a 21-point disadvantage.
Australia beat wales despite a 21-point disadvantage.

In the 78th minute, Nawaqanitawase broke away once more, and Lachlan Lonergan scored the game-winning try by collecting a loose ball on the right wing.

Nawaqanitawase’s opening try, a deft finish in the corner, planted the first seeds of doubt in Welsh minds, but those whispers became louder when Tipuric was exiled.

The second try was scored by Nawaqanitawase after a beautiful move off a lineout, and the penalty try pulled Australia within two points with five minutes remaining.

This is a devastating loss for Wales, especially considering how wonderfully they played up to that point. They welcomed back several familiar players, each of whom performed admirably.

Deficit to complete
Australia beat wales despite a 21-point disadvantage.

Even the newcomers appeared to be fitting in. Whether any of that meant anything, considering the vast number of missing Wallabies, is irrelevant, but this appeared to be a reprieve for Wayne Pivac. Now, the inquiries about his future will be far louder than murmurs.

Wales lost both halfbacks to injury, with Leigh Halfpenny withdrawing in the warm-up due to injury. Wales collapsed after Gareth Anscombe, who appeared so dominating at fly-half, exited with a shoulder injury in the 55th minute. Tomos Williams was replaced in the 10th minute.

Initial indicators had been so optimistic. Wales’ forwards performed with confidence, combining deft handling with strong scrums. In the 10th minute, Alun Wyn Jones’s surge from Williams’ half-break culminated in a spectacular offload that sent Jac Morgan away for the game’s first try.

If Jones represents Wales’s past, Morgan appears to be the most suitable representative of their future. He bulldozed through multiple tackles and completed a few passes himself.

Taulupe Faletau scored a try on his 100th cap after Tipuric went through a hole and the backline, notably teenager Rio Dyer from the opposite flank, handled the ball with deftness to put Taulupe Faletau over in the corner. Wales led 20-6 right before the hour mark after Anscombe’s second penalty kick.

Australia appeared to be adrift at that time, which was hardly unexpected considering the number of absentees. On this tour, they have been anything but fools, however. A fortnight ago, their one-point loss to Italy may not have appeared so bad, but they had lost their previous three Tests by a total of five points.

When they pushed a lineout over for their first try five minutes before halftime, it appeared they were giving notice that they would not be advancing.

In a rational world, Wales’s two goals just after halftime would have ended the contest. Jake Gordon, the scrum half for Australia, received a yellow card at the end of the first quarter as the Wallabies managed to keep out the Welsh raiders.

Tom Robertson was issued a second yellow card five minutes into the second half for the club’s sixteenth consecutive scrum penalty, which aided the home team. Wales did not so much drive the subsequent lineout as gallop it over the line for Morgan’s second try against 13 men.

Five minutes later, they capitalized on a solid position from another lineout, which led to a succession of forward-five surges. Dyer scored the decisive goal by receiving Anscombe’s cut-back pass and scoring in the corner. Anscombe scored a goal from the sideline.

21-point advantage. Impregnable. Surely? Unfortunately, that was Anscombe’s final significant contribution, as he sustained an injury while confronting the formidable Ned Hanigan. He left, and Wales did so as well.

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