Third Test: Australia v Ireland

Joe Schmidt's side are looking to make history in a series decider against the Wallabies in Sydney

Gavin Cummiskey Sat, Jun 23
LIVE: Third Test: Australia v Ireland

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  • The Bus was late to Alliaz stadium. Sydney traffic. Safe to assume Joe Schmidt will be apoplectic. The Ireland coach took over a year to recover from BusGate (part 1) in Edinburgh. Bad start.
  • Garry Ringrose in moon boot.
  • Gavin Cummiskey here for the next two hours as Ireland attempt to complete what would be the greatest season in their history. Grand Slam and Test Series win is as good as it gets.
  • Nightmare scenario for Munster ref John Lacey in All Blacks v France. Blocking players and not pulling it back is poor. Oh well.
  • Schmidt is very animated on pitch for warm-up. Late bus and late withdrawal of Seán Cronin (no hidden theories, he missed Captain's Run, just injured, right?). Niall Scannell starts (an opportunity to nail down the number two jersey ahead of Japan 2019).
  • Shane Horgan on Sky wanted to see someone else at 15 this week.
    The Ringrose in midfield with Henshaw/Aki call never happened as Ringrose was injured. That could be the test series decided right there.

    No Ringrose nor Dan Leavy and Ireland would have struggled to complete the Grand Slam. They'll miss them today. Henshaw is no 13. Peter O'Mahony is definitely not a 7. Great players out of position.
  • A tale of two personas.

    Nervy Joe Schmidt: "We need to make more of the opportunities we make...There is a fair bit of anxiety. We had the bus late drama again, which we could have done without, it took half the time to get here yesterday, so that's kind of put guys out of kilter...."
    Blink, blink: "It's perfect really, those things happen, we need to manage that, and still start well. Manage a bit of anxiety at the start of the game and things will flow."


    Smiling Cheika: "I don't know if all gun will be blazing. I'm sure theere will be a few people trying to stop us from playing. It's all about the physicality we bring up front."
  • "ANXIETY" said twice in one pre-match interview. This is Schmidt's one weakness. He hates buses. Busaphobia.
  • The ref will be busy with Pocock v O'Mahony.
    Pascal Gaüzère (France).
    Ben Skeen is on VAR.
  • Some teams?

    AUSTRALIA: Israel Folau (Waratahs); Marika Koroibete (Rebels), Samu Kerevi (Reds), Kurtley Beale (Waratahs), Dan Haylett-Petty (Rebels); Bernard Foley (Waratahs), Nick Phipps (Waratahs); Scott Sio (Brumbies), Brandon Paenga-Amosa (Reds), Sekope Kepu (Waratahs), Izack Rodda (Reds), Adam Coleman (Rebels), Lukhan Tui (Reds), Michael Hooper (Waratahs, capt), David Pocock (Brumbies).

    Replacements: Tolu Latu (Waratahs), Tom Robertson (Waratahs), Taniela Tupou (Reds), Rob Simmons (Waratahs), Ned Hanigan (Waratahs), Pete Samu (Brumbies), Joe Powell (Waratahs), Reece Hodge (Rebels).

    IRELAND: Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster); Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster), Robbie Henshaw(Buccaneers/Leinster), Bundee Aki (Galwegians/Connacht), Jacob Stockdale (Ballynahinch/Ulster) ; Johnny Sexton (St Mary’s College/Leinster), Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster); Jack McGrath (St Mary’s College/Leinster), Niall Scannell (Dolphin/Munster), James Ryan (UCD/Leinster), Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster), CJ Stander (Shannon/Munster), Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster, capt), Jack Conan (Old Belvedere/Leinster).

    Replacements: Rob Herring (Ballynahinch/Ulster), Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster), John Ryan (Cork Constitution/Munster) , Tadhg Beirne (Scarlets), Jordi Murphy (Lansdowne/Leinster), Kieran Marmion (Corinthians/Connacht), Ross Byrne (UCD/Leinster), Jordan Larmour (St Mary’s College/Leinster).
  • The Ireland squad that captured the Grand Slam at Twickenham on St Paddy's Day had Ringrose, Cronin, Best, Henderson, DAN LEAVY, Andrew Porter, Joey Carbery so...

    Can Henshaw produce at 13.
    Can O'Mahony repeat lat week's performance at the breakdown?
  • Cheika is building a gang of hunters in his pack.
    Heavy, physical team. Marika Koroibete, Samu Kerevi, Lukhan Tui.
  • Our people in the stadium are saying Joe Schmidt is very anxious. Hopefully doesn't bleed into team. Just dressed down one of his people on the pitch.
  • Yikes.
  • The contrast with Cheika is stark: smiling "hobo", betcha he knows the bus driver.
  • Wallabies, calm, focused. Ireland "Anxious" according to their head coach who just bawled out a staff member on the pitch. 13 degrees on this Sydney night. Swathes of green in the stadium (all Tadhg Furlong's mates). No Sean Cronin. Niall Scannell starts.

  • Ireland bench doesn't look strong enough to turn the tide in a close test. Expect 80 minutes from Murray and Sexton. If one goes down, Ireland follows.

    Bench: Rob Herring (Ballynahinch/Ulster), Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster), John Ryan (Cork Constitution/Munster) , Tadhg Beirne (Scarlets), Jordi Murphy (Lansdowne/Leinster), Kieran Marmion (Corinthians/Connacht), Ross Byrne (UCD/Leinster), Jordan Larmour (St Mary’s College/Leinster).
  • A lovely rendition of the most ridiculous "anthem" ever penned.
    Phil Coulter.
    Just feeds the "Irish" joke worldwide.
  • Bernard Foley kicks off and Peter O'Mahony toppled onto his head contesting with Folau.
  • O'Mahony brilliant turnover. He needs a Head Injury Assessment. Two blows to neck/shoulder area. He always takes these really worrying belts. Not that anyone cares.
  • 4 mins: Australia 0-0 Ireland

    Wallabies battering away. Kurtley Beale is the key to their attack but Bundee Aki has him well man marked.
  • Sexton hit late by Sekope Kepu. Holding his back. Shit.
  • Kepu should be on "report" for doing Sexton from behind after the ball was passed. The usual Irish moan. Kiwi TMO is happy to move on.
  • 6 mins: Australia 0-0 Ireland.

    Ireland lose attacking lineout. The hits are savage.
  • Adam Coleman (great steal in lineout) done for not rolling away. Stinger for Wallabies as Pocock had his mitts on the ball.
    Sexton opens the scoring.
  • 8 mins: Australia 0-3 Ireland
    Sexton pen.
  • Oh no. Rob Kearney stepped on dead ball line. Wallabies five metre scrum...
  • Sexton roaring at touch judge after being done for offside. Aussie penalty. Should be 3-3...
  • 13 mins: Australia 3-3 Ireland
    Bernard Foley pen
  • Ireland pounding away. Half break by Bundee Aki. Try has to come.
  • David Pocock is a freak.
  • The greatest openside on the planet (wearing 8) denies Ireland what looked an inevitable try with a perfect steal.
  • 16 mins: Australia 3-3 Ireland

    Michael Hooper is on one knee. Struggling. Gone. Furlong cleared him out of a ruck. Samu arrives so the Wallaby backrow actually has a better balance. Pocock at openside.
  • That's perfect. Pocock gets over CJ Stander. McGrath and James Ryan arrive but cannot budge the Zimbabwean.
  • Pocock 2-1 O'Mahony
  • Carnage. Players down all over the place. No concussions today. Rob Kearney in some bother.
  • Kearney holding his left shoulder after being emptied out of touch by Marika Koroibete. Meanwhile, led with the elbow into Nick Phibbs face. TMO.
  • Pascal Gaüzère: "Forearm around the neck. Penalty and yellow card."
    Stockdale gets 10 minutes in the sin bin.
  • 20 mins: Australia 3-3 Ireland.
    Ireland down to 14 for 10 minutes (Stockdale elbow). Michael Hooper forced off after being bulldozed by Tadhg Furlong. Pocock is reminding everyone he's the best player in the world.
  • 22 mins: Australia 6-3 Ireland
    Stockdale elbow to Phipps neck cost Ireland three points and counting...
  • Kepu is harshly done at the breakdown. "Not rolling."
    Conor Murray time. Rocket from long range slides left and wide. Still 6-3 to Wallabies.
  • Huge carries from CJ, Bundee, James Ryan, POM ends with Dev Toner being emptied by Marika Koroibete.
  • Ireland have entered the Wallaby 22 on three occasions with tries on their mind but they have been repealed every time.
  • Samu barges through the ruck. Penalty.
  • Sexton makes it 6-6. Ireland are the better team. Pocock has been the difference or the reason why the score doesn't read 20-6.
  • Ok, this looks very bad. For the second time, Peter O'Mahony crashed to earth while competing in the air with Folau.
  • Sexton is captain now. Has an introductory argument with Pascal Gaüzère.
  • Folau is saved by Benjamin Fall incident (France v NZ). The Wallaby fullback makes contact with O'Mahony (lifted by Stander) in the air. The Ireland captain is being carted off. TMO is reviewing.
    "You play the player in the air yellow card."
  • Pocock makes a very good point: "Sir, they are being lifted."
  • Folau beaten to ball by CJ Stander launching O'Mahony into the air. World Rugby have a new conundrum.

  • Try coming for Ireland.
  • 32 mins: Australia 6-6 Ireland, as Murray fires bodies at the Wallaby try line. The scrumhalf shows and goes, and appears to touch the post.

    "Try, yes or no."
  • "Inconclusive. Hold on Pascal."
    Pascal Gaüzère blows for an Ireland penalty for offside.
    Sexton will take the points.
  • 33 mins: Australia 6-9 Ireland
    Sexton pen

    Both captains gone. Hooper got shunted off the ball by Furlong, O'Mahony taken out in the air by Folau (yellow card).
  • The O'Mahony injury (he was carted off the field) came because CJ Stander lifted him so Ireland could compete in the air with Folau. Both men focused on the ball. O'Mahony crash landed on his back. He looked shook from kick off when something similar happened.
  • Wallabies go in search of a try before half-time. Both captains gone off injured (Pocock and Sexton have taken over). Bundee Aki and Samu Kerevi just met in midfield.
  • Conor Murray is down.
  • Joe Winters Folau dragged him by the shoulder.
  • 40 mins: Australia 9-9 Ireland
    Foley pen.

    Honours even. Two yellow cards (Stockdale for an elbow, Folau for taking O'Mahony out in mid air).
  • Pocock is a smart captain. Almost overturns a penalty by noting Rob Kearney disrupted Haylett-Petty in the air.
  • HT - Ireland 12-9 Australia
    Sexton's fourth penalty from four shots.
  • Ok, the first half in a paragraph. Joe Schmidt was very "anxious" before kick-off as the bus to the stadium got gridlocked in downtown Sydney. Michael Hooper didn't last long (milled by Tadhg Furlong). David Pocock was insanely good at the breakdown (two turnover penalties in spitting distance of his own try line). Peter O'Mahony was also superb despite taking an awful belt from kick-off (eventually carted off after clashing mid air with Folau). Oh yeah, two sin sins: Stockdale for elbowing Nick Phipps, Folau for the above.

    Sexton refuses to blink.
  • Lynagh: "Does CJ Stander not have a responsibility to bring (O'Mahony) down?"
    Horgan: "There is a contact in the air...It is almost a consequence of the game, and of playing against Israel Folau."
  • Last 40 minutes of the season.
    Here's who is still standing: Kearney, Earls, Henshaw, Aki, Stockdale, Sexton, Murray, McGrath, Scannell, Furlong, Toner, Ryan, Stander, Jordi, COnan.
  • Cheeky banana kick by Sexton ends up with Ireland penalty five metres from the try line. Huge chance. Time out: foul play by "five gold"...
  • Adam Coleman barged into the ruck. Tolu Latu also threw Murray a smack. Nothing in it. Ireland go to touch.
  • 43 mins: Wallabies penalised for dragging down maul. Adam Coleman is getting treatment. No yellow card. TMO looking at it. Ireland should finish this off now, better team.
  • Go again...Scannell to Jordi Murphy and the drive delivers a try.
  • CJ Stander comes up with the ball. Sexton conversion will make it 19-9. Two score game. Party time in Sydney.
  • 45 mins: Ireland 17-9 Australia
    Sexton conversion doesn't hold its line.
  • Bernard Foley fumble. Irish crowd roars.
  • 44,085 at Allianz stadium. About 40 percent green...
  • CJ Stander try (after a few lineout drives) appears to have wrapped up this test series. Ireland lead 17-9 with 30 minutes to play.
  • Kepu getting back slapped as Wallabies win scrum penalty. Oh: Bernard Foley turns down easy three points. They are backing their maul. Huge moment.

  • Wallabies going for broke, pounding the Irish defence before Foley flicks the ball out to Folau. Doesn't go to hand. Australia penalty. Conor Murray offside.
  • Again, Foley goes to touch. 52 minutes played. Eight point game (Ireland leading 17-9). Maul v Defence.
  • Suffocating stuff from Ireland but the bodies are bound to tire. CJ Stander has been phenomenal.
  • Marika Koroibete try. Sexton can't stop him after nifty grubber by Bernard Foley.
  • 56 mins: Australia 16-17 Ireland
    Cian Healy is on, so is Rob Herring. Surely Tadhg Beirne can help the cause.
  • Big moment. Tolu Latu buries Rob Kearney and turnover has Foley going to touch, again!. Penalty would put Wallabies ahead. Maybe they know something...
  • Tongan Thor and Jordan Larmour are both on.
  • The greatest season could unravel. Bundee Aki rumbles Ireland out of their 22. Murray goes to the air. Folau catches. Here they come again.
  • Lukhan Tui absolutely nails Bundee Aki but not before hospital pass for James Ryan. Wallaby scrum on halfway. 60 minutes played. Australia 16-17 Ireland.
  • Scrum penalty to Wallabies.
    Ireland are getting out muscled.
  • Whatever happens in the next 15 minutes the Ireland defence to this point has been fantastic, real physicality from Jack Conan, CJ Stadner, James Ryan etc and technically superb. But the heat is immense now.

    Australia 16-17 Ireland.
  • Bernard Foley penalty for a high tackle by Larmour.
  • Bernard Foley penalty fades away.
    Ireland lead 17-16.
    67 minutes on the clock.
  • Another scrum. Stockdale knock on. Every moment feels huge.
  • 68 minutes: Kerevi brekas Sexton's tackle but a poor pass by Joe Powell to Foley's boot laces is knocked on. Ireland survive.
  • Ireland creep up to the 10 metre line. They need a score to survive.
  • Stander is Ireland's best player (as he has been all season). Tadhg Beirne is out there. Bundee Aki puts Ireland into Wallaby territory.
  • Interception by Beale. Sexton is having a nightmare few minutes. Conor Murray is hurt. Wallabies back on the attack. 70 mins: Ireland 17-16 Australia.
  • Turover. Ireland have the ball back. Tense.
  • Keith Earks foot in touch. Damn it. Wallabies get possession on halfway and a chance to launch another attack.
  • Oh. Joe Powell gets done for a forward pass to Tongan Thor. Huge error if it was an error. Massive mistake by the referee. Cheika in box: "F$%% C***"
  • Maybe another angle will save Pascal Gaüzère but it looks like he just gifted Ireland possession with six minutes left and the series on the line. Huge call.
  • Sexton goes to the lien and releases. He gets smashed by Kerevi. TMO...
  • Pascal Gaüzère: "Tackle is legal."
    Easy debut for Ross Byrne.
    Pascal Gaüzère: "Change or..."
  • Johnny Sexton plays on.
    75 mins: Ireland 17-16 Australia
  • The ball (and so the test series) is literally bobbling about. Madness.
  • Jordan Larmour makes a great catch under severe pressure. Ireland penalty!
  • Folau deliberate knock on. No yellow.
  • Cheika is going to be very angry. Tolu Latu got in over the ball, excellent technique, but Pascal Gaüzère warned him to release. He didn't. Sexton to win the series.
  • Folau takes the restart.
  • Four point game 15 seconds to play. Wallabies enter Ireland 22.
  • Bernard Foley throws the ball into touch.
  • Is that it?
  • More TMO.
  • Pascal Gaüzère wants to check deliberate knock on by green.
  • What a tackle by Aki on Foley. Game winner.
  • Stockdale is innocent. His finter tips did not deliberately knock the ball on.
  • Decison: "Pascal, I must have clear and obvious evidence. There is no clear and obvious evidence that the ball touched green and deviated."

  • Sexton: "Thank you."
  • Australia are sick.
  • 2018: Grand Slam and series win in Australia. Magic season.