Published: Sat, June 23, 2018
Sport | By Cameron Gross

Australia ends Ireland's unbeaten run with 18-9 win

Australia ends Ireland's unbeaten run with 18-9 win

He scored the final try of the match in the 72nd minute and was one of his side's most influential players.

"First tackle back, stirred it up again and tried to play on though the season with it, but in the end we chose to just take our time with it and I've been pretty happy with the last couple of games".

Cheika, who coached Leinster to their first-ever European Cup in 2009, knows well the challenges of playing the Irish - now ranked second in the world and unbeaten in their last 12 internationals.

Keith Earls, center left, of Ireland is tackled by Michael Hooper, center right, of Australia during the global rugby match between Australia and Ireland in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, June 9, 2018.

"I thought credit to Australia, they came out on top in a lot of physical battles".

"We just have to get on the right side of the scoreboard each week".

Foley got the first points of the match from the kicking tee but Carbery matched him minutes later, as Ireland proved they would not be overawed.

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And these two teams' performances in their first game give every reason to believe that an Iceland win is the most likely result . Wilfred Ndidi forced Hannes Halldorsson into a fine fingertip save with a wickedly dipping shot from distance in the 58th minute.

The match opened at a frenetic pace and it was Australia who got the first points on the board when Foley landed the first of his penalties in the second minute.

Australia took an early lead through the boot of Bernard Foley as Bundee Aki got caught offside, but Carbery drew the tourists level and then nudged them in front after Michael Hooper strayed offside.

The Wallabies spun the ball wide at every opportunity to try to beat the Irish rush defence, and were nearly rewarded when giant winger Marika Koroibete was given space and set sail for the corner - only for Jacob Stockdale to appear from nowhere and put him into touch with a superb covering tackle.

Foley was unable to convert so the hosts went into halftime 8-6 ahead but the Irish came out from the break firing and number eight CJ Stander soon stormed through the midfield and crossed the line only to be held up. "To be able to pull on the green and gold and represent Australia and go out there and do your best and also know you're representing so many people in Zimbabwe, who have been part of the journey, it's a huge honour and something I don't take for granted".

Folau had a try ruled out for foul play in the build up while Marmion's injury-time score was also cancelled out by the Television Match Official.

Australia would not be denied, though, and Foley slotted his second penalty after a scrum infringement before Pocock put the icing on the cake by flashing across the line from close range.

Pocock says he custom ordered a stack of headgears two years ago and doesn't have a whole lot of spares floating around. "His presence on the field is fantastic".

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