Follow the action LIVE as it happens with us on:
CLASSIC WALLABIES 24 - 27 BARBARIANS
Crozier Field, Lismore 24 October 2017
KO: 17:30 HT: 12-22 Att: 3,000
THE lines three-and-a-half metres up the posts told their own story: they marked the level of the flooding that engulfed Lismore earlier this year. The water has gone but the rural New South Wales community is still rebuilding and Alan Jones’s Barbarians side played their part in an entertaining rugby occasion to benefit flood relief fundraising.
A crowd of 3,000 at Crozier Field watched them share nine tries with the Classic Wallabies, who fielded veterans of the calibre of Drew Mitchell, Lote Tuqiri and Morgan Turinui in their ranks.
Brumbies full back Tom Banks and Japan-based fly half Sam Greene each scored two tries, and Force lock Richard Arnold – twin brother of the Wallabies’ Rory – galloped over to put the Baa-baas 27-12 clear early in the second half.
But the invitation side could not finish several decent chances after that and then clung on as Jock Armstrong and Byron Hutchinson scoring in the closing minutes. Tuqiri had opened the account for the Classics with Alex Gibbon also striking in the first half.
Banks showed his finishing ability down the right inside the first five minutes before Tuqiri – Australia’s World Cup final try-scorer in 2003 – profited from a superb break by Mitchell and Gibbon picked off an extravagant pass in his own half to put the Classics in front.
The Barbarians regained the lead when Arnold surged over and Banks’ second effort and Greene’s first earned a 22-12 interval lead.
Greene extended the advantage further but the Baa-baas could not hang onto the ball for long after that and lost scrum half and captain Michael Ruru to a hamstring injury.
Teenager Theo Strang – an 18 year-old just out of Scots College – was an impressive replacement, and 17 year-old Brett Wellington showed up well in the back row in the closing stages.
The Classics took advantage of handling errors and Armstrong took advantage of one midfield spill before Hutchinson’s try set up a frantic last 10 minutes.
“We made quite a few mistakes but that wasn’t my concern,” said Head Coach Alan Jones, whose side face Australia at Allianz Stadium in Sydney on Saturday.
“My concern was that we really had a go with the football. We played more ball in the air than we did on the ground. There was a heap of kids here who played very, very well."
15 Drew Mitchell 14 Alex Gibbon 13 Matt Carraro 12 Morgan Turinui 11 Lote Tuqiri 10 Nick Jooste 9 Brett Sheehan 1 Conor Young 2 Adam Freier 3 Matt Gibbon 4 Jake Douglas 5 Radike Samo 6 Dave McDuling 7 AJ Gilbert 8 Pat McCutcheon BENCH: 16 Bill Johnson 17 Rory O'Connor 18 Jock Armstrong 19 Pat Phibbs 20 Clay Uyen 21 James Verity-Amm 22 Byron Hutchinson 23 Brendan Owen
SCORERS T: Banks (2), Arnold, Greene (2) C: Greene
15 Tom Banks 14 Jack Maddocks 13 Tom Connor 12 David Horwitz 11 Andrew Kellaway 10 Sam Greene 9 Michael Ruru (C) 1 Sef Fa’agase 2 Anaru Rangi 3 Salesi Manu 4 Richard Arnold 5 Matt Philip 6 Max Girdler 7 Kane Koteka 8 Sam Ward BENCH: 16 Andrew Ready 17 Pek Cowan 18 Taniela Tupou 19 Sam Carter 20 Isi Naisarani 21 Theo Strang 22 Tim Nanai-Williams 23 Brett Wellington
SCORERS T: Tuqiri, Gibbon, Armstrong, Hutchinson C: Jooste (2)
Referee: Rohan Hoffman Asst Referees: Jordan Way, Aaron Pook
AUSTRALIA 31 - 28 BARBARIANS
Allianz Stadium, Sydney 28 October 2017
KO: 15:00 HT: 12-21 Att: 17,021
AN inexperienced Qantas Wallabies side fought back from a nine-point half-time deficit to down the Barbarians 31-28 at Allianz Stadium in Sydney.
Trailing 21-12 at the break, the youthful Australian side ran in three second half tries to take home the spoils after the Barbarians turned on an entertaining opening forty minutes to score three tries of their own prior to the break.
The invitational side, playing in Sydney for the first time since 2009, lost Captain Quade Cooper and winger Taqele Naiyaravoro to yellow cards inside the final ten minutes after taking a 28-24 lead on a Naiyaravoro try which was set up by a Cooper cross-field kick in the 67th minute.
After Cooper was binned for a high tackle on Israel Folau, the Wallabies capitalised on their two-man advantage when Stephen Moore barged over from a rolling maul to score what would be the match-winner with seven minutes left to play.
Queensland Reds centre Duncan Paia'aua made a good fist of his opportunity in the gold number 10 jersey, crossing for a try in each half and finishing with a personal haul of 16 points.
The Alan Jones-coached Barbarians threw in some trickery midway through the first half when prop Taniela Tupou burst through on a rehearsed play and cross the line with the ball tucked under his jersey.
The try was rightfully not awarded, but that crowd-pleasing moment was the only thing light-hearted about the Barbarians performance. Several stinging hits in defence, including a bone-rattler from Wycliff Palu on young hooker Jordan Uelese in the second half, proved that the men in the black and white hooped jerseys meant business.
The Wallabies produced a more measured second half performance, and when the combinations began to take hold, the Australians finished the stronger in a close battle.
In a double blow for the Wallabies, rookie flanker Jack Dempsey and lock Lukhan Tui both exited the field in the second half with hamstring injuries.
15 Karmichael Hunt 14 Henry Speight 13 Samu Kerevi 12 Billy Meakes 11 Israel Folau 10 Duncan Paia'aua 9 NICK PHIPPS (C) 1 Tom Robertson 2 Jordan Uelese 3 Allan Alaalatoa 4 Rory Arnold 5 Lukhan Tui 6 Ned Hanigan 7 Jack Dempsey 8 Lopeti Timani BENCH: 16 Stephen Moore 17 Tetera Faulkner 18 Jermaine Ainsley 19 Kane Douglas 20 Ben McCalman 21 Joe Powell 22 Curtis Rona 23 Izaia Perese
SCORERS T: Paia'aua (2), Speight, Dempsey, Moore C: Paia'aua (3)
15 Tim Nanai-Williams (Chiefs & Samoa) 14 Taqele Naiyaravoro (Waratahs & Australia) 13 Tom Banks (Brumbies) 12 George Moala (Blues & New Zealand) 11 Eto Nabuli (Reds & Australia) 10 QUADE COOPER (C) (REDS & AUSTRALIA) 9 Augustine Pulu (Blues & New Zealand) 1 Pek Cowan (Force & Australia) 2 Andrew Ready (Reds) 3 Taniela Tupou (Reds) 4 Luke Jones (Bordeaux Bègles & Australia) 5 Sam Carter (Brumbies & Australia) 6 Isi Naisarani (Force) 7 Matt Hodgson (Force & Australia) 8 Wycliff Palu (Toyota Verblitz & Australia) BENCH: 16 Anaru Rangi (Force) 17 Ben Alexander (Brumbies & Australia) 18 Salesi Manu (Bond) 19 Matt Philip (Force) 20 Kane Koteka (Force) 21 Theo Strang (Sydney University) 22 Sam Greene (Toyota Verblitz) 23 Andrew Kellaway (Waratahs) 24th man: Sam Ward (Warringah)
SCORERS T: Ready, Naiyaravoro (2), Banks C: Cooper (4) Naiyaravoro, Cooper
Referee: Brendon Pickerill Asst Referees: Jamie Nutbrown, James Leckie TMO: Aaron Paterson
JAPAN 27 - 47 WORLD XV
Level5 Stadium, Fukuoka 28 October 2017
KO: 15:00 HT: 14-13
15 Ryuji Noguchi 14 Lomano Lemeki 13 Teaupa Shione 12 Ryoto Nakamura 11 Akihito Yamada 10 Yu Tamura 9 Fumiaki Tanaka 1 Keita Inagaki 2 Atsushi Sakate 3 Jiwon Koo 4 Himeno Kazuki 5 Wimpie van der Walt 6 Yoshitaka Tokunaga 7 Shunsuke Nunomaki 8 MICHAEL LEITCH (C) BENCH: 16 Takeshi Hino 17 Shintaro Ishihara 18 Asaeli Ai Valu 19 Kotaro Yatabe 20 Uwe Helu 21 Fetuani Lautaimi 22 Shuhei Matsuhashi 23 Yutaka Nagare 24 Rikiya Matsuda 25 Ryohei Yamanaka
SCORERS T: Noguchi, Teaupa, Helu C: Tamura, Matsuda (2) P: Tamura (2)
15 Ayumu Goromaru 14 Yoshikazu Fujita 13 Richard Buckman 12 Harold Vorster 11 Vince Aso 10 Berrick Barnes 9 ANDREW ELLIS (C) 1 Jacques van Rooyen 2 Adriaan Strauss 3 Ruan Smith 4 Geoff Parling 5 RG Snyman 6 Kwagga Smith 7 Edward Quirk 8 Willem Britz BENCH: 16 Corey Flynn 17 Greg Pleasants-Tate 18 Facundo Gigena 19 Sam Wykes 20 Simone Favaro 21 Nic Stirzaker 22 Takuya Yamasawa 23 Digby Ioane 24 Jean-Pierre Smith
SCORERS T: Fujita (2), Aso, Wykes, Strauss, Flynn, Buckman C: Goromaru (5), Yamasawa
Referee: Nic Berry Asst Referees: Angus Gardner, Rohan Hoffman TMO: Ian Smith
NB KO times above are local; not all Tier 2 matches are covered in full