Best and worst players ranked since Wallabies record loss to Argentina


Argentina started on fire, kept their cool and beat Australia by a record score. Here’s who struggled and stood out for the Wallabies as the Pumas went wild 48-17.

“It was pure calamity,” said The Roar pundit Jim Tucker on our Instant Reaction podcast.

“And very informative on where Australia is headed in this championship. If they thought the San Juan air raids were anything, imagine what South Africa is going to put in the sky.

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Dave Rennie’s side were crushed by injuries and the coach admitted they lacked cohesion. On the other hand, Argentine coach Michael Cheika changed his game plan and flew off with questionable kicks. The Pumas had the ball in the air 28 times compared to 15 in the opening Test, won by Australia a week earlier.

Ian Foster may have entered the second round of the TRC as the most pressured coach, but it won’t be long before Rennie feels the heat. He has now lost three and won two of his first five Tests of 2022, with nine to play.

In a way, it’s lucky for Rennie that he’s away from home after such an embarrassing scoreline.

The Wallabies opted against post-match press conferences for Australia-based reporters during games in Argentina and that could give the Australian manager some breathing room as he got away with some mea culpas on Stan Sports.

Tucker said the opening moments – when Argentina scored thanks to a mix-up between Jordan Petaia and Tom Wright – summed up an Australian problem – the absence of a No.15 specialist and he felt Jock Campbell would come into the game. equation against the Springboks.

“The drop is really the fullback position overall,” Tucker said. “He was filled in today by Tom Wright and it’s not a knock on Tom Wright. He’s a winger who plays at the back, he did some good things, he ran the ball behind his own try line, it was a good play in this situation.

“But it’s about the basics. For the full-backs, you have to take every high ball that is thrown into the sky, you just have to be in position and read it five yards in advance and that has never happened.

Rennie hopes at least seven of the 17 ruled out players will return in home Tests, and surely, one on a day that few Wallabies stood up to be counted, Andrew Kellaway’s stock rose as much as anyone’s. who.

Was there any good news?

Rob Valetini had his best game of the international season, running hard and setting up a try for James Slipper. Early in the second half, another powerful push should have resulted in a try for Petaia, who was stripped after crossing the try line.

“Fortunately, it’s another really good performance that confirms what he did last week, and we haven’t really seen that through the English series,” Brett McKay said on the podcast.

“He carries strong again, he breaks tackles. He unloads.

Harry Jones, on the podcast, gave his stock to Marika Koroibete. As well as a long-ranger which Morgan Turinui claimed was the winger’s best kick in international football, he saved a certain try with an astonishing last resort tackle.

“I would put someone’s name and then I would put an X on it, but the only one I never really erased completely was Koribete,” Jones said.

“He sometimes looked like a one-man band. Sometimes he was the only one who seemed to know the rules.

Tucker opted for Len Ikitau as his standout Wallaby.

“Mostly because he has this composed nature for Test footy and stayed in the fight until the end,” Tucker said.

“He showed really good footwork to break through the line. And it’s that player who might only do one or two things in a test match with footwork, but they’re enough to set up a try and that moment could have given some momentum to the Australia.

Now on to the bad news…

As the scoreline suggests, positives were rare for the Wallabies and they were behind from the first minute.

Jones said it was a diabolical rugby performance on the road and Petaia set the tone.

“Why the hell are you running full in your backside returning a ball in the very first minute?” said Jones.

“Everything must be fine. The sun is in your eyes. Fans want you to drop it – getting off to a bad start on the road is horrible.

Fraser McReight, after an impressive game in Michael Hooper’s absence a week ago, failed to reach the same standards, handing out several penalties while Taniela Tupou continues to struggle after her long absence through Super Rugby .

Jones said TT was dominated by young Argentinian prop Thomas Gallo, who scored two tries including one where Tupou was directly at fault.

“A lot of people see him as the best in the world team image. He had Gallo against him, 23, only had four tests,” Jones said.

“Gallo got the better of him. Not just in open play where he made him miss two tackles, but also in scrum. It felt like Tupou was turning on and off.

(Photo by Rodrigo Valle/Getty Images)

“When he was on the pitch he was plugged into the game, but I think on the road it’s actually better to even that out – you just don’t want to let anybody run in soft tries. You can never win with 48 against you in any scenario.

“Letting in that sweet Gallo try was awful and I also feel like his cleanups were inaccurate.”

McKay said it was the kind of performance that suggested Tupou was a better impact option and Allan Alaalatoa – absent from this match for personal reasons – was the better option to start.

” It’s interesting. We are hesitant on that,” Tucker replied. “Allan Alaalatoa gives you a really solid result. Maybe never those super explosive bursts through the line and how little sophisticated handling and testing ability Tupou has, but more often than not he delivers a really consistent base.

“Tupou can open a game. So it will always be a situation or a situation that I feel and especially a close-headed prop cannot play seven Tests in a row. The Wallabies will always change in this arrangement and I’m pretty comfortable with that. But Tupou needs to raise that level of consistency.




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