Wallabies' failed game plan
REACTION: Wallaby captain Michael Hooper admitted his team failed to stick to the pre-match plan, resulting in their heaviest defeat to the All Blacks.
Australia endured a nightmare to hand New Zealand the Bledisloe Cup for an 18th straight year.
The All Blacks piled on six tries to one, with flyhalf and man-of-the-match Richie Mo’unga bagging a brilliant double and a 23-point personal haul as the Kiwis seized an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the four-game series with a record-breaking 43-5 rout on Saturday.
“We’re hurting a lot from that,” the Wallaby skipper, Hooper, said.
“It’s a hit to the confidence now.
“We’ve got to go back and look at sticking to our game plan.”
Wallabies coach Dave Rennie handed Test debuts to flyhalf Noah Lolesio and inside centre Irae Simone, marking the first time in 73 years that Australia had blooded a rookie No.10-No.12 combination against the All Blacks.
But the daring move backfired, Mo’unga’s mastery schooling Lolesio as the 20-year-old’s forgettable first half helped the All Blacks bolt to a 26-0 lead at the break.
Defending at fullback, Lolesio struggled with his positional play as the All Blacks, armed with more than 60 percent possession and territory, mounted attack after attack.
Lolesio’s kicking game was also poor.
But the young playmaker was far from alone in having an off match.
Three-Test wing Filipo Daugunu crashed back to earth from the highs of his Wellington debut in the series-opening draw, a succession of handling errors and his early stint in the sin-bin also hurting the Wallabies.
Daugunu vowed pre-game to put a hit on his All Blacks opposite and Bledisloe II chief destroyer Caleb Clarke, but got his timing badly wrong, leaving the Wallabies with 14 men in just the third minute after taking out his opposing wing in mid-air.
“They were very clinical,” Hooper admitted.
“They played the conditions really well, jumped on a lot of loose ball.
“I just don’t think we were accurate.
“So again giving away possession too easily and then we didn’t kick smart.”