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Match Summary The Kangaroos have completely outplayed a woefully inept Kiwi team on the way to running up a record-breaking 58-0 win in Wellington.
The match started in a traditional fashion with both teams laying a platform, but unfortunately for the Kiwis their platform was made from twigs. Once the Kangaroos had established their dominance they wasted no time in transferring it to the scoreboard, with Israel Folau and Steve Price scoring the first two tries with remarkable ease.
The Kiwis suffered two casualties during the first half - Luke Covell dislocated his elbow during the opening exchanges, and centre Steve Matai found himself sent off for a dangerous high tackle on opposing centre Mark Gasnier. Matai's stupidity proved costly for his team as the Kangaroos ran in a further three tries for a 26-0 halftime lead.
The second half dished up more of the same - the Kangaroos were white-hot and were almost toying with their opponents at times, while the Kiwis were often caught staring into the headlights. At no stage did the home team look like scoring, while the Australians were doing so regularly and hardly breaking a sweat in the process.
There were plenty of standouts for the Kangaroos today - captain Cameron Smith marshalled his troops well, Greg Inglis provided the backline spark, Greg Bird proved he was the right man for the #6 jersey, and Willie Mason savoured the hostile Wellington welcome while proving he is still worthy of a Test spot. Fellow Kangaroos Steve Price, Jarryd Hayne and Kurt Gidley all had their moments in the record-breaking victory.
The Kiwis now head off to England for a three-test series, and new coach Gary Kemble has one heck of a job on his hands to turn this team around.
Match Details Centenary Test - Full Time :: October 14th, 2007 01:00 PM Venue: Westpac Stadium, Wellington Referee: Steve Ganson Halftime: New Zealand 0 Australia 26 Crowd: 16,681
New Zealand 0
Australia 58 Tries: Greg Inglis (3), Israel Folau (2), Steve Price, Jarryd Hayne, Brett Stewart, Greg Bird, Willie Mason, Cameron Smith Goals: Cameron Smith (7/10), Kurt Gidley (1/1).
LeagueUnlimited.com Player of the Match 3 Points: Cameron Smith (Kangaroos) 2 Points: Greg Bird (Kangaroos) 1 Point: Greg Inglis (Kangaroos)
LeagueUnlimited.com Live Commentary 8 new players in the Australian line-up today, with Price set to start. 5 new players for the Kiwis, along with a new coach.
Fine conditions for the Trans Tasman test, however a swirling wind in the stadium.
Rousing haka in front of the small crowd and we're set to go.
1 min: The Kiwis have the kick off, hot on attack with a mistake by the Kangaroos on the first tackle.
2 min: The Kangaroos survive the first Kiwi onslaught in the game and finish their first set.
4 min: First penalty in the game to the Kangaroos however Smith fails to find touch in difficult conditions with the wind swirling.
7 min: Covell leaves the field after a hard tackle, with an injured elbow. Hape replaces him
10 min: Report thru, Covell has a dislocated elbow, unlikely to return to the match. No score so far in this one off test.
13 min: Back to back penalties for Australia, and they're hot on attack 5 metres out from their line.
14 min: No try to Bird for the Kangaroos as the ball looked to be stripped on the line. The ref rules play on.
15 min: TRY Australia A turnover early in the tackle count by the Kiwis and the Australians hop on the opportunity. Folau bust thru 5 defenders to score his first try in Australian colours. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 6-0
19 min: Australia close to scoring again however Civoniceva knocks on right on the line on the 1st tackle.
22 min: TRY Australia Very soft defence by the Kiwis allows the Warriors captain through for the easiest of tries. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 12-0
23 min: High shot on Gasnier by Matai after a warning by the ref two minutes earlier. The stretcher on for Gasnier. Matai sent off.
28 min: TRY Australia Clinical display byh the Kangaroos following an error by the Kiwis. One way traffic. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith unsuccessful. Australia 16-0
31 min: TRY Australia One set and the Aussies are thru again. Folau out wide knows how to finish. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith unsuccessful. Australia 20-0
35 min: TRY Australia Impressive ball control by the Kangaroos and Hayne crosses thru some very soft defence. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 26-0
36 min: Aus 1 missed tackle, Kiwis 23, says it all.
39 min: Finally some possession and attack for the Kiwis, and for the crowd to cheer about.
HALFTIME: Only one team in the game at this stage. Kangaroos lead easily, 26-0.
41 min: A tough ask for the Kiwis in the second half as the Kangaroos kick off.
43 min: Early pressure by the Kiwis is easily snuffled out by the Australians.
46 min: Johnson pinged for a high shot on Storm team mate Lima. Mason lifting as well made it look worse.
48 min: TRY Australia Bird bust thru what defensive line the Kiwis had. A pass to Stewart who sets up Inglis out wide for his 2nd of the match. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith unsuccessful. Australia 30-0
55 min: A chant goes up for the Kiwis from the die hard fans. The players need something to lift them
56 min: TRY Australia Stewart scores on debut diving across the line out wide. Another difficult kick for Smith. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith unsuccessful. Australia 34-0
61 min: TRY Australia A well deserved try on debut to Bird who has played brilliantly. The right angles at the right time. Great to watch. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 40-0
65 min: The Kiwis looking to attack close to their line, however once again the fumbling starts.
66 min: TRY Australia Hat-trick to Inglis as Crocker splits the defence wide open. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 46-0
67 min: Inu leaving the field with what looks like a shoulder injury.
72 min: TRY Australia The crowd boo as Mason brings up the 50 points for Australia. The bounce of the ball totally in the Kangaroos hands. They now equal the highest score against the Kiwis. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 52-0
74 min: The stats tell the story. Missed tackles 45-3, Offloads 17-4. No guesses to which teams, as many of the 16681 strong crowd head home.
78 min: TRY Australia The record is now broken. A well deserved try to the captain. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful. Australia 58-0
FULLTIME - Record breaking win for the Kangaroos in a clinical display. Major soul searching before the Kiwis head north.