Friday 23 June 2017

Depleted Wallabies too good for dogged Scots

Australia's Chris Feauai-Sautia (C) scores a try against Scotland
Australia's Chris Feauai-Sautia (C) scores a try against Scotland

Australia made light of the loss of five suspended players to run in two tries in a nervy 21-15 win over Scotland at Murrayfield today.

Fullback Israel Folau and winger Chris Feauai-Sautia crossed the line for the Wallabies, who banned five players from taking part in the match following a drinking session days before their 32-15 win over Ireland last weekend.

"I'm obviously happy with the outcome," Australia coach Ewen McKenzie told the BBC.

"It's pretty hard to come here and play - they'll be greedy and put pressure on. We made mistakes and didn't take the penalties when we got them.

"We were up against it but we came through. We lacked discipline during a couple of moments in the first half when they came back into it and although we got the try, we didn't push on."

Man-of-the-match Folau scored the only try of the first half, scything through the Scotland defence before sprinting 20 metres to touch down.

Scotland, who lost 28-0 to South Africa last weekend following a 42-17 win over Japan, stayed in touch thanks to four penalties by scrumhalf Greig Laidlaw and trailed only 13-12 at halftime.

Feauai-Sautia barged over early in the second half but, after Australia lock Rob Simmons was sent to the sin bin for punching, Laidlaw brought the Scots back to 18-15.

Christian Lealiifano restored Australia's six-point cushion but he missed three penalties in a tense final quarter as the Scots tried in vain to score that elusive try and win a third match in a row against the Wallabies.

"I can't quibble with the effort - we let ourselves down with the execution," Scotland interim coach Scott Johnson said.

"The young kids we have can only get better. I'm really pleased with the effort - I'm sick of being good losers. The character of the squad is developing. We'll get good character in the forwards and once we get panache behind them we might scare a few teams."

Australia lost 20-13 to England in the first test of their tour before crushing Italy 50-20 and beating Ireland.

They play Wales in the final match of the tour next weekend.

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