Worst Wallabies year on record

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Post by bsando on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 5:43 pm

Well it was a trainwreck in the end (http://www.606v2.com/t64398-wallabies-nh-tour-trainwreck-imminent?highlight=trainwreck). A very disappointing year for the Wallabies and Australian rugby. I've done a quick check and in terms of losses, I think I am correct in saying 2016 was the worst year in Australian rugby history with a total of 9 losses overall. Robbie Deans last year in charge accumulated in 8 losses and two of those were against the British and Irish Lions.

Both England and Ireland have improved which made it hard for Australia. Four losses to England and one to Ireland meant 5 of their 9 losses were to NH opposition, 3 losses to NZ and a loss to SA away. These are all great teams so it's not quite as bad as SA losing to Italy (which they had never done before) and the lowest ranked team they played this year was Scotland.

There were positives at times during the year, but overall the results and 80 minute performances were well below par. Some of the matches against NZ were just terrible. There is no lack of talent although as I said in my original post pre tour, there is a concerning amount of talent playing their club rugby in Europe and Japan. I had no idea that Pocock was moving to Japan for 2017 but that is going to be another big loss.

I think certain players like Beale and O'connor have not been looked after properly and have been punished for their misdemeanours rather than nurtured and guided. There has been far too much negativity and Cheika doesn't help the cause much with his awful comments in the press. I think he has to be sacked due to the results let alone his attitude.

Thoughts?

Australia's Awful 2016

Aus 28 39 Eng
Aus 7 23 Eng
Aus 40 44 Eng
Aus 8 42 NZ
NZ 29 9 Aus

Aus 23 17 SA
Aus 36 20 Arg

SA 18 10 Aus
Arg 21 33 Aus
NZ 42 10 Aus
Wal 8 32 Aus
Sco 22 23 Aus
Fra 23 25 Aus

Ire 27 24 Aus
Eng 37 21 Aus


6 wins and 9 losses
Total points for - 329
Total points against - 412

2015 results - 10 wins 2 losses

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Post by lostinwales on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 6:34 pm

'World class' attack. The best full back there has been for years, the brilliance of Pocock and a fantastic center/winger and occasional flanker called Hooper.

But little depth, lacking a decent kicker, fragile under pressure and it has to be said maybe not the strongest defense? These are the things that England has capitalised on. We spend half the time and effort scoring points that you do.

Some things are easier to fix than others. From England's point of view the players are the same as the ones who collapsed under pressure late on against Wales and then from the start against the Wallabies at the RWC, but the attitude and smarts shown under a new coach has made all the difference. You have to say Cheika has to go.

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Post by bsando on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 6:40 pm

lostinwales wrote:'World class' attack. The best full back there has been for years, the brilliance of Pocock and a fantastic center/winger and occasional flanker called Hooper.

But little depth, lacking a decent kicker, fragile under pressure and it has to be said maybe not the strongest defense? These are the things that England has capitalised on. We spend half the time and effort scoring points that you do.

Some things are easier to fix than others. From England's point of view the players are the same as the ones who collapsed under pressure late on against Wales and then from the start against the Wallabies at the RWC, but the attitude and smarts shown under a new coach has made all the difference. You have to say Cheika has to go.

OK Totally agree with all of that

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Post by ChequeredJersey on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 6:51 pm

bsando wrote:Well it was a trainwreck in the end (http://www.606v2.com/t64398-wallabies-nh-tour-trainwreck-imminent?highlight=trainwreck). A very disappointing year for the Wallabies and Australian rugby. I've done a quick check and in terms of losses, I think I am correct in saying 2016 was the worst year in Australian rugby history with a total of 9 losses overall. Robbie Deans last year in charge accumulated in 8 losses and two of those were against the British and Irish Lions.

Both England and Ireland have improved which made it hard for Australia. Four losses to England and one to Ireland meant 5 of their 9 losses were to NH opposition, 3 losses to NZ and a loss to SA away. These are all great teams so it's not quite as bad as SA losing to Italy (which they had never done before) and the lowest ranked team they played this year was Scotland.

There were positives at times during the year, but overall the results and 80 minute performances were well below par. Some of the matches against NZ were just terrible. There is no lack of talent although as I said in my original post pre tour, there is a concerning amount of talent playing their club rugby in Europe and Japan. I had no idea that Pocock was moving to Japan for 2017 but that is going to be another big loss.

I think certain players like Beale and O'connor have not been looked after properly and have been punished for their misdemeanours rather than nurtured and guided. There has been far too much negativity and Cheika doesn't help the cause much with his awful comments in the press. I think he has to be sacked due to the results let alone his attitude.

Thoughts?

Australia's Awful 2016

Aus 28 39 Eng
Aus 7 23 Eng
Aus 40 44 Eng
Aus 8 42 NZ
NZ 29 9 Aus

Aus 23 17 SA
Aus 36 20 Arg

SA 18 10 Aus
Arg 21 33 Aus
NZ 42 10 Aus
Wal 8 32 Aus
Sco 22 23 Aus
Fra 23 25 Aus

Ire 27 24 Aus
Eng 37 21 Aus


6 wins and 9 losses
Total points for - 329
Total points against - 412

2015 results - 10 wins 2 losses


To be fair, the Lions the Aussies in Deans' era lost to weren't exactly the greatest Lions team ever Wink

And this year most of your losses have been to England and NZ
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Post by majesticimperialman on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 6:52 pm

Disspite some amazing talent in the Australian team. their performance today was well below par.

I thought after the first 20/25 minutes England was going to get slaughterd. to go in to half time 3 points down. would normally mean in the second half England would lose. But in the last year England have developed a dig deep policy.

Australia (used to have that type of mentality) They don't any more. Still their is all ways next year to put things right. right?

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Post by Barney McGrew did it on Sat 03 Dec 2016, 7:10 pm

Apparently Hansen has asked if the ABs can play in the 6N next time - think he wants them to be playing the better sides more regularly...
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Post by uncle_nigel on Sun 04 Dec 2016, 9:26 am

Every time the Wallabies drop a match the fans claim it's a B team or their worst ever team in history, whinging it out in typical Australian fashion. Is this year any different? Personally I don't think they're that bad, it's just a lot of teams are a bit better, especially at their home ground. What Deans did for the Wallabies was give them a set-piece and for that he was scapegoated - I don't often remember seeing them overpowered under Deans like they have been against England (4 times now) under Cheika.

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Post by boomeranga on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 2:46 am

Tough year no doubt Bsando.  The only positive, and it is one for me, was a few of the new players look likely to make a difference in years to come.

I don't think Cheika is going anywhere.  It's a sad indictment on us but there is a real lack of local alternatives and I don't think an appetite at the moment for a foreign coach.  Personally I like Cheika and so don't mind if he stays.

We clearly need to add a few things to our team and our game to improve.  The teams that beat us invariably have better big man options through lock, 6 and 8.  We are really struggling to uncover international standard players in these positions.

We also need more depth in the halves, and options that control games and not just attack.  I can see it coming (possibly, potentially) at 9, but 10 looks to be a drought for us.  If Foley and Cooper went down, Toomua is ineligible, Beale is eligible but has a long way back from a bad injury, Lilo has Leukaemia, Giteau / JOC / Barnes all overseas and basically out of the picture as a result.  Where at 9 there are young boys coming on, I don't see who will be the next generation of 10's.  

And we need to be smarter.  Our tactics are fun but flawed, lack variation, and we are not very smart in relation to the whistle.  If a team do what it takes to slow down the breakdown, we are pretty easily controlled.

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Post by fa0019 on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 5:46 pm

I would say though that 10 of their matches were against the big traditional sides mind.

4 vs. ENG
3 vs. NZ
2 vs. SA
1 vs. FRA

That's quite a task on hand. At the start of the year I would probably have said they would have won 4 of those matches.... they won 2 so its not as disastrous as first thought. The problem with having smart setups and coaching is without first class players, eventually teams find you out and I think that's what happened with AUS.

They did very well in 2015, arguably the best performing team relatively speaking in the world... yet clever homework was all the adjustments like England needed to turn 20 point deficits into 20 point comfortable win margins.

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Post by SecretFly on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 6:54 pm

boomeranga wrote:

And we need to be smarter.  Our tactics are fun but flawed, lack variation, and we are not very smart in relation to the whistle.  If a team do what it takes to slow down the breakdown, we are pretty easily controlled.

It seems Australia's lovely, loose, counter-attacking, pacy game is being met by and challenged by teams that are much more in tune defensively overall nowadays and teams that have certainly upped the physicality of the forward setpieces. Where once Pocock was getting his way and winning those turnovers that gave the ball back to a dangerous attacking Australia, now sides that they meet are drilled better in keeping ball and so the time Australia have to work their magic over 80 minutes is not what it perhaps once was.

I think Cheika's work is now mostly in the forwards. They can be tough basterdes to be sure but, as you say, there needs to be more smarts and maybe less gung-ho emotion.
I love the Australian game - equal amounts stand-up-and-fight heroics with that often exceptional injection of pace and beauty. But Cheika needs to rein it all back in and reassert basics and military level routine. Break it down to build it up again, piece by piece.


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Post by boomeranga on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 9:56 pm

fa0019 wrote:I would say though that 10 of their matches were against the big traditional sides mind.

4 vs. ENG
3 vs. NZ
2 vs. SA
1 vs. FRA

That's quite a task on hand. At the start of the year I would probably have said they would have won 4 of those matches.... they won 2 so its not as disastrous as first thought. The problem with having smart setups and coaching is without first class players, eventually teams find you out and I think that's what happened with AUS.

They did very well in 2015, arguably the best performing team relatively speaking in the world... yet clever homework was all the adjustments like England needed to turn 20 point deficits into 20 point comfortable win margins.

Yeah, it was a pretty tough schedule this year with the last 8 tests were on the road as well. It may be the making of them in the long run though.

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Post by boomeranga on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 10:00 pm

SecretFly wrote:
boomeranga wrote:

And we need to be smarter.  Our tactics are fun but flawed, lack variation, and we are not very smart in relation to the whistle.  If a team do what it takes to slow down the breakdown, we are pretty easily controlled.

It seems Australia's lovely, loose, counter-attacking, pacy game is being met by and challenged by teams that are much more in tune defensively overall nowadays and teams that have certainly upped the physicality of the forward setpieces.  Where once Pocock was getting his way and winning those turnovers that gave the ball back to a dangerous attacking Australia, now sides that they meet are drilled better in keeping ball and so the time Australia have to work their magic over 80 minutes is not what it perhaps once was.

I think Cheika's work is now mostly in the forwards.  They can be tough basterdes to be sure but, as you say, there needs to be more smarts and maybe less gung-ho emotion.  
I love the Australian game - equal amounts stand-up-and-fight heroics with that often exceptional injection of pace and beauty.  But Cheika needs to rein it all back in and reassert basics and military level routine.  Break it down to build it up again, piece by piece.


I think the latter period of Dingo, and then McKenzie's short reign, were based on fairly pragmatic game plans that won some matches but didn't inspire supporters much. Cheika has been the antithesis of that approach but will need to recognise the pragmatism of other game plans is necessary. At a minimum we will need to start kicking the ball a bit more. We run and run, but eventually blow up from the effort of getting down the field.

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Post by emack2 on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 10:13 pm

For the Wallabies it has been a game of two years in 2015 Cheika did something
no other Oz Coach has done .He used the foreign legion NH based players were
selected in the 2015 RC which they won at home mostly 3-0.
They were also used in the RWC and there performances in it earned Cheika
coach of the year award.All we heard of was the "Pooper" and the massive
Ladesma Coached Scrum.
Injuries in key positions early in the 3rd Bledisloe and Final NZ matches
of the year the only two they lost.
In the Series against England they picked Home based players only the
Phipps/Foley combo proved indifferent plus playing Pocock at 8 unbalanced
the lineout.
In 2016 the RC they reverted to the Foreign legion for them but most
ended up injured.
In the Ai`s the squad was with the exception of Will Genia nearly all
homebased players and again they sustained injuries.
Constant selection changes didn't help combinations and Foleys goal kicking
problems either near a 100% then to many off days.
England by contrast under a Squad,Saxons,academy.and Under 20 RWC
squads coming through.The Continuity created by Stuart Lancaster and
"The Teflon Kid"
Have real depth and polished by Eddie Jones team have been able to overcome injury worries to be Worthy of there position in the world order Rolling Eyes
.

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Post by Cyril on Mon 05 Dec 2016, 11:15 pm

Why the 'rolling eyes' emoticon?

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Post by Rugby Fan on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 5:43 am

Keep changing my mind about Australia. Wallaby fans are taking some comfort from the fact they lost most matches to the ranked 1 & 2 teams but England are only ranked second because we beat Australia 4 times, including three away matches. I believe a Wallaby win last weekend would have seen England drop to 3rd, so there's not really a natural order asserting itself.

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Post by uncle_nigel on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 9:13 am

boomeranga wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
boomeranga wrote:

And we need to be smarter.  Our tactics are fun but flawed, lack variation, and we are not very smart in relation to the whistle.  If a team do what it takes to slow down the breakdown, we are pretty easily controlled.

It seems Australia's lovely, loose, counter-attacking, pacy game is being met by and challenged by teams that are much more in tune defensively overall nowadays and teams that have certainly upped the physicality of the forward setpieces.  Where once Pocock was getting his way and winning those turnovers that gave the ball back to a dangerous attacking Australia, now sides that they meet are drilled better in keeping ball and so the time Australia have to work their magic over 80 minutes is not what it perhaps once was.

I think Cheika's work is now mostly in the forwards.  They can be tough basterdes to be sure but, as you say, there needs to be more smarts and maybe less gung-ho emotion.  
I love the Australian game - equal amounts stand-up-and-fight heroics with that often exceptional injection of pace and beauty.  But Cheika needs to rein it all back in and reassert basics and military level routine.  Break it down to build it up again, piece by piece.


I think the latter period of Dingo, and then McKenzie's short reign, were based on fairly pragmatic game plans that won some matches but didn't inspire supporters much.  Cheika has been the antithesis of that approach but will need to recognise the pragmatism of other game plans is necessary.  At a minimum we will need to start kicking the ball a bit more.  We run and run, but eventually blow up from the effort of getting down the field.

I haven't heard from McKenzie since his resignation - what ever happened to him? I think there's a team in south wales that could do with his expertise...

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Post by boomeranga on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 10:52 am

Rugby Fan wrote:Keep changing my mind about Australia. Wallaby fans are taking some comfort from the fact they lost most matches to the ranked 1 & 2 teams but England are only ranked second because we beat Australia 4 times, including three away matches. I believe a Wallaby win last weekend would have seen England drop to 3rd, so there's not really a natural order asserting itself.

When you read the Roar you need to recognise it really isn't 'Australia'. It is dominated by about 20 very vocal kiwis and a similar number of Australians.  Probably more kiwis these days in reality.  For the Australians, they post over and over about the same things, that are based in reality but mostly based in inter-state animosity.  You'll see if you take notice of polls they occasionally run that the silent majority is more sensible than the personalities that dominate.

I think many of us recognise we played 6 games against this years two dominant teams.  I think we are years away from catching New Zealand, but don't know for any fact we are years away from you.  New Zealand have beaten us hands down for ten years or more.  Emgland need to prove this year wasn't just a great year because just last year they were poor and we expect we will come back.  Whether we come back strongly enough to overtake you is the the exciting part.

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Post by boomeranga on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 10:55 am

uncle_nigel wrote:
boomeranga wrote:
SecretFly wrote:
boomeranga wrote:

And we need to be smarter.  Our tactics are fun but flawed, lack variation, and we are not very smart in relation to the whistle.  If a team do what it takes to slow down the breakdown, we are pretty easily controlled.

It seems Australia's lovely, loose, counter-attacking, pacy game is being met by and challenged by teams that are much more in tune defensively overall nowadays and teams that have certainly upped the physicality of the forward setpieces.  Where once Pocock was getting his way and winning those turnovers that gave the ball back to a dangerous attacking Australia, now sides that they meet are drilled better in keeping ball and so the time Australia have to work their magic over 80 minutes is not what it perhaps once was.

I think Cheika's work is now mostly in the forwards.  They can be tough basterdes to be sure but, as you say, there needs to be more smarts and maybe less gung-ho emotion.  
I love the Australian game - equal amounts stand-up-and-fight heroics with that often exceptional injection of pace and beauty.  But Cheika needs to rein it all back in and reassert basics and military level routine.  Break it down to build it up again, piece by piece.


I think the latter period of Dingo, and then McKenzie's short reign, were based on fairly pragmatic game plans that won some matches but didn't inspire supporters much.  Cheika has been the antithesis of that approach but will need to recognise the pragmatism of other game plans is necessary.  At a minimum we will need to start kicking the ball a bit more.  We run and run, but eventually blow up from the effort of getting down the field.

I haven't heard from McKenzie since his resignation - what ever happened to him? I think there's a team in south wales that could do with his expertise...

Last I heard of him he was being a Town Planner in Christchurch. Apparently that was his trade pre rugby. I'd like him back in Oz as well. He and Cheika would be a great combo. One is rugby smart, and one can manage and motivate.

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Post by uncle_nigel on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 11:46 am

I guess you're referring to McKenzie as being the rugby smart one? The way he transformed the Reds was fantastic.

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Post by GeordieFalcon on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 11:47 am

lostinwales wrote:'World class' attack. The best full back there has been for years, the brilliance of Pocock and a fantastic center/winger and occasional flanker called Hooper.

But little depth, lacking a decent kicker, fragile under pressure and it has to be said maybe not the strongest defense? These are the things that England has capitalised on. We spend half the time and effort scoring points that you do.

Some things are easier to fix than others. From England's point of view the players are the same as the ones who collapsed under pressure late on against Wales and then from the start against the Wallabies at the RWC, but the attitude and smarts shown under a new coach has made all the difference. You have to say Cheika has to go.

Ive said it many a time and agree totally with that.

In the few games ive seen him actually strictly play an openside role...he is world class....but he just spends too much time away from the nitty gritty duties.

Maybe that's the tactics with Pocock in there? But it just doesn't quite work for me.

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Post by profitius on Tue 06 Dec 2016, 7:23 pm

I'm on the fence at the moment regarding the Wallabies. There are pros and cons.


Pros
They've a good set of coaches and play a nice brand of rugby.
They've debuted a lot of players this year.
They got to the world cup final 12 months ago.
They still have a good attitude and a tough to beat.


Cons
Inconsistent.
A bit predictable.
Weak front 5.
Set pieces could be better.
They've lost a load of talent to Europe and are resorting to picking players who qualify on residence.
They're not as smart as previous Wallabie teams.
They're finding it hard to stop the flow of players to European clubs.
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Post by bsando on Fri 16 Dec 2016, 11:02 am

Some good analysis there from you Boomeranga and Profitius, I mostly agree. I do forget just how many new players have been thrown into the international scene this year by Cheika.

The main priority you feel is for the ARU to identify the problems we have noted above and to actually address them!

I grew up during a time when Australia put huge scores against NH teams and beat the All blacks more regularly. Their defence used to be incredible in the late 90's and perhaps it would be good to get a few of those legends in to chat about their time in the green and gold and inspire some of the new talent.

I'm certain 2017 will be a better year.

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