Wallabies defeated by Scotland in tight Sydney battle

Saturday June 17, 2017

Scotland has held on for a dramatic 24-19 victory over the Wallabies at Allianz Stadium in Sydney on Saturday afternoon.

Down by five points at the break, the Wallabies took the lead for the first time in the match mid-way through the second half after a try to Will Genia, however the Scots hit back through flanker Hamish Watson five minutes later and thwarted Australia’s late charge to emerge five-point winners.

Six Nations star, flyhalf Finn Russell continued his hot form for Scotland scoring a try and landing a perfect three-from-three with the boot to guide the visitors home.

In yet another tight arm-wrestle between the two nations, the Wallabies had their chances late to once again spoil Scotland’s party but this time it was Gregor Townsend’s men who earned a penalty at the death to stave off Australia’s last-gasp raid.

Scotland opened their account with a penalty in the second minute of the match with fullback Greig Tonks converting a long-range shot from near halfway.

The visitors continued to pressure the Wallabies with quick line speed and eventually capitalised when a stray pass from Tatafu Polota-Nau was nabbed by centre Duncan Taylor who raced under the posts to set up a 10-0 lead.

Australia powered their way into the match and a well-timed pass by Will Genia allowed flyhalf Bernard Foley to put Israel Folau into space to score the Wallabies’ opening try and narrow the gap to 7-10.

A no arms tackle by Foley then reduced the Wallabies to 14 men in the 23rd minute and Scotland took advantage, scoring moments later through Russell who charged down a Genia clearing kick on the goal line to advance the Scottish lead to 17-7.

Australia wrestled back momentum in the final stages of the first half with a brilliant run by Captain Michael Hooper from the scrum base bringing the Sydney crowd to their feet. Soon after Folau produced his second try-scoring double in as many weeks with a spectacular leaping grab from a Foley cross-field kick to narrow the gap to five points.

The second stanza began as a scrap between the two sides as both countries fought hard to register first points.

The Wallabies pounded the Scottish defensive line and were eventually rewarded for their efforts when Genia leaped over from the base of the ruck to give the home side its first lead of the match at 19-17 after Foley’s conversion.

It didn’t take long for the determined Scots to fight back, when Watson finished off some superb ball movement down the right side to score what would be the telling blow.

Replacement back Quade Cooper sparked the men in gold late in the half, producing some vintage attacking flair however in the end the defensive wall of Scotland held firm.

The Wallabies will finalise their June International campaign with a clash with Italy at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane next Saturday, June 24.

Scotland 24 (Duncan Taylor, Finn Russell, Hamish Watson tries; Finn Russell 3 cons; Greig Tonks pen) defeated Australia 19 (Israel Folau 2, Will Genia tries; Bernard Foley 2 cons) at Allianz Stadium, Sydney.

News Source: ARU Media