Sports

Australia-Wales matches at the Rugby World Cup

September 29, 2019

A look back at Australia vs. Wales matches in Rugby World Cup history:

1987 Rotorua: Wales 22, Australia 21

In this playoff for third, flanker David Codey was sent off just five minutes in for stamping but his Wallabies teammates led until the dying moments when a Jonathan Davies punt was snatched by John Devereaux, and Paul Thorburn offloaded for Adrian Hadley to score in the corner. Thorburn knew he made the match-winning conversion from the sideline as soon as he hit it. The Wallabies surged the length of the field in reply but an inside pass from David Campese went astray.

1991 Cardiff: Australia 38, Wales 3

Wales was eviscerated and eliminated in the pool stage, putting a pall over the Arms Park. The champions in waiting included greats such as John Eales, Michael Lynagh, Jason Little, Tim Horan, Willie Ofahengaue, Simon Poidevin, Phil Kearns and David Campese. The result remains Australia’s biggest win over Wales in Wales.

1999 Cardiff: Australia 24, Wales 9

Wales clawed back in this quarterfinal in the rain to trail 10-9 deep into the second half. The Wallabies’ backs had been dangerous but hindered by a soapy ball. The next scorer was crucial, and it was Australia. A Stephen Larkham grubber kick was slid on to by Ben Tune in the in-goal and Wales hearts were broken yet again. The final score flattered the visitors but they advanced.

2007 Cardiff: Australia 32, Wales 20

Australia led 25-3 at halftime and 32-13 after an hour, after which it could afford to play briefly with 13 players. Australia won the pool and made Wales face eventual champion South Africa in the quarterfinals.

2011 Auckland: Australia 21, Wales 18

Australia lifted itself better than Wales for this third-place playoff, and forced Wales to play catch-up from early on. Wales led after its first try in the second half, but only for four minutes. Australia secured it with a Ben McCalman try five minutes from time.

2015 London: Australia 15, Wales 6

Bernard Foley’s five penalties trumped Dan Biggar’s two as Australia, down to 13 men at one point, gave a masterclass in gutsy defense to hold out Wales in this brutally tough pool decider at Twickenham.

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