ABs decision on Woodcock Tuesday
Mon, 20 Aug 2012 6:41p.m.
By Jim Kayes
The Wallabies woes have deepened.
Skipper David Pocock will miss Saturday's second Bledisloe Cup Test in Auckland with a knee injury.
The All Blacks will decide Tuesday if loosehead prop Tony Woodcock's sore ribs will allow him to play.
Meanwhile, head coach Steve Hansen has dismissed any concerns about how the new Rugby Championship will be refereed.
The All Blacks are in a generous mood, giving away boots to kids from South Auckland. There's a generous spirit towards rugby's referees too, the All Blacks saying it wasn't just the pedantic Allain Rolland who contributed to a stop-start match in Sydney.
“I think we could have adapted better,” says All Blacks hooker Keven Mealamu. “I think both teams just looked like teams that hadn't been out on the field for a little while and probably that's what led to a lot of mistakes.”
“I think the referee might have made a couple of mistakes himself but we certainly contributed to him blowing the whistle,” says Hansen.
“We got offside. It's not his fault we were offside. We've got to adapt and adjust ourselves. It's no good us whinging about the ref.”
The All Blacks will find life a bit easier at the breakdown with the knee injury to Wallaby openside David Pocock.
But they were the masters of their own mistakes, while a sloppy lineout didn't help their attack.
“Fourteen lineouts and probably played off about six of them, so you’ve just halved your possession platforms that you play off and mainly through our own fault,” says Hansen. “Our delivery to the halfback was pretty shoddy.”
If the All Blacks tidy up their errors, they should be comfortable winners at Eden Park, where they haven't lost to Australia at since 1986.
“We've got a good record there but we've got to make sure we prepare well to keep that intact,” says Mealamu. “We know that they'll improve from the weekend as well. We don't expect them to just turn up and roll over.”
The Wallabies are named on Thursday with Robbie Deans under pressure to recall mercurial first-five Quade Cooper, while with fullback Kirtley Beale could drop to the bench.
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20/08/2012 8:42:51 p.m.
Good stuff guys, my son was one of the boys that received signed boots. Great to see the support from the boys in black!!!
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