Tuesday 20 August 2019

Beauden insists brother isn't 'dirty' despite red

Scott Barrett was sent off just before half-time after making contact with the head of Wallabies flanker Michael Hooper. Photo: Cameron Spencer/Getty Images
Scott Barrett was sent off just before half-time after making contact with the head of Wallabies flanker Michael Hooper. Photo: Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Nigel Whittaker

Beauden Barrett leaped to the defence of his brother Scott after the lock's red card - just the fourth All Black dismissal in 583 Tests - in New Zealand's surprise 47-26 thumping at the hands of fierce rivals Australia.

Scott Barrett was sent off just before half-time after making contact with the head of Wallabies flanker Michael Hooper and he may yet miss next week's rematch in Auckland after the 25-year-old was charged with a dangerous tackle.

His older brother Beauden (28), who played at full-back against Australia, said the tackle on Hooper carried no malice and insisted that the hit was unfortunate and out of character.

"Obviously he's really disappointed and he's carrying a lot of responsibility on his shoulders at the moment," Beauden Barrett said.

"I reminded him that he's not a dirty player and he realises that, too.

"He's just disappointed in himself and he's taking responsibility but these things can happen, especially when you're defending close to the line and players do get in the low position."

Australia gave themselves a huge boost ahead of the World Cup and they were well worth their first win over the world champions since 2017.

Winger Reece Hodge scored two of their six tries as Australia ran up their highest tally of points in 165 tests against the All Blacks and gave themselves a chance of regaining the Bledisloe Cup they last raised aloft in 2002.

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Australia, who play the second Bledisloe test in Auckland next week, could yet win the Rugby Championship for the first time since 2015 but they will need Argentina to beat South Africa in Salta.

That will matter little to Michael Cheika and his team, who have endured four largely miserable seasons since they lost to the All Blacks in the last World Cup final.

Lock Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, scrum-half Nic White, winger Marika Koroibete and fullback Kurtley Beale also crossed for the Wallabies in front of a packed house of 61,241 at Perth Stadium.

The All Blacks had tries from backs Anton Lienert-Brown, Rieko Ioane, Beauden Barrett and Ngani Laumape but they will not be happy with a defeat on the back of a draw against the Springboks. (© Independent News Desk)

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