Live: Wallabies chasing rare Bledisloe Cup Test win at Eden Park


It has been 35 years since the Wallabies last defeated the All Blacks at Eden Park — can they snap the losing streak tonight?

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By Luke Pentony

By Luke Pentony

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If you can’t get to a TV and want to listen on the radio, we have you covered.

By Luke Pentony

ABs looking sharp

For All Blacks fans, here is your matchday 23.

15. Damian McKenzie

14. Will Jordan

13. Rieko Ioane

12. David Havili

11. Sevu Reece

10. Richie Mo’unga

9. Aaron Smith

8. Ardie Savea

7. Dalton Papalii

6. Akira Ioane

5. Sam Whitelock (captain)

4. Brodie Retallick

3. Nepo Laulala

2. Codie Taylor

1. George Bower

Reserves (5-3 split)

16. Samisoni Taukei’aho

17. Karl Tu’inukuafe

18. Angus Ta’avao

19. Scott Barrett

20. Luke Jacobson

21. TJ Perenara

22. Beauden Barrett

23. Jordie Barrett

By Luke Pentony

Wallabies make changes

Switching back to the present day, Wallabies coach Dave Rennie has made four changes to his starting XV, with some tweaks to his reserves bench.

Here is the line-up:

15. Tom Banks

14. Andrew Kellaway

13. Hunter Paisami

12. Matt To’omua

11. Marika Koroibete

10. Noah Lolesio

9. Tate McDermott

8. Rob Valetini

7. Michael Hooper (captain)

6. Lachie Swinton

5. Matt Philip

4. Darcy Swain

3. Allan Alaalatoa

2. Brandon Paenga-Amosa

1. James Slipper

Reserves (5-3 forwards-backs split)

16. Jordan Uelese

17. Scott Sio

18. Taniela Tupou

19. Lukhan Salakaia-Loto

20. Harry Wilson

21. Nic White

22. Len Ikitau

23. Reece Hodge

In the backs, Koroibete replaces Jordan Petaia on the wing, and To’omua takes the place of Len Ikitau (who played 13 last week) in the centres.

In the pack, Matt Phillip is selected ahead of Salakaia-Loto in the second row and Lachie Swinton added to back row at blindside flanker, with Rob Valetini starting at number eight and with Harry Wilson shifted to the bench.

Also on the bench, Nic White and Scott Sio have been called up.

By Luke Pentony

Just sayin’

While I continue to obsess over the 35-year hoodoo, another indication of the All Blacks’ domination of the Wallabies on home soil is the fact Australia has not beaten them in New Zealand since 2001.

Twenty years ago, on August 11, the Wallabies won 23-15 at Carisbrook to retain the Bledisloe Cup and set up their Tri-Nations series victory that season.

Alas, the All Blacks have won the past 26 Tests against the Wallabies on home soil.

For the stat-minded readers following on at home, the All Blacks have won 118 of 171 Tests played against Australia, who has triumphed on 45 occasions.

Eight Tests have been drawn.

By Luke Pentony

Those were the days

Look, I obviously can’t let this go, but to give you more of a feel for what it was like back in ’86, here’s how good the Wallabies’ starting XV was that monumental day at Eden Park.

15. Andrew Leeds

14. David Campese

13. Andrew Slack (captain)

12. Brett Papworth

11. Matt Burke

10. Michael Lynagh

9. Nick Farr-Jones

8. Steve “Bird” Tuynman

7. Jeff Miller

6. Simon Poidevin

5. Bill Campbell

4. Steve “Skylab” Cutler

3. Mark Hartill

2. Tom Lawton

1. Enrique “Topo” Rodriguez

The series win was the summit for the great Wallabies team of 1984-86, following their historic Grand Slam triumph two years earlier.

Ah the memories…

PS: I’ll let slide the fact the Wallabies should have wrapped up the series in the second Test at Carisbrook when Tuynman was denied a legitimate try by referee Derek Bevan (even one of the All Blacks who tackled Bird on the line said it was try!), before going down 13-12 to set up a decider in Auckland.

By Luke Pentony

So … 35 years you say?

I was hoping the previous blog post would be the only time I would have to refer to the Wallabies’ most recent win over the ABs at Eden Park, but it can’t be ignored or pushed to the side that easily.

It was September 6, 1986 — to be precise — when the Wallabies last tasted success over their trans-Tasman rival in Auckland, a famous 22-9 triumph that saw Australia claim a 2-1 Bledisloe Cup series.

I can’t remember what the price of a litre of milk was back then, but to give you some idea of how long ago that was, here are some fast facts:

  • Madonna’s Papa don’t preach was atop the ARIA charts, and Wa Wa Nee’s Stimulation and Bananarama’s Venus were bouncing around inside the top 10
  • Top Gun and The Karate Kid Part II were showing in Australian cinemas, while Steve Guttenberg was considered box-office material, as his starring roles in Police Academy 3 and Short Circuit were “captivating” audiences

Another sign of the times was the fact Essendon was a premiership force in Australian football back then, and the defence of its 1985 flag ended that same day at the hands of Fitzroy in the first week of the VFL finals.

By Luke Pentony


G’day and thanks for joining our live blog of the second Bledisloe Cup Test, as the Wallabies attempt to beat the All Blacks at Auckland’s Eden Park for the first time in 35 years.

The Wallabies are coming off a 33-25 loss to the All Blacks in last Saturday’s Bledisloe Cup opener and have made changes to their matchday squad, which we will look at more closely as we approach kick-off.

Meanwhile, the All Blacks are humming along and have reason to be brimming with confidence as they look to make it 27 straight victories over the Wallabies on New Zealand soil.

Tonight’s Test marks the beginning of The Rugby Championship, with the focus to shift to South Africa in the early hours of tomorrow morning when the world champion Springboks host Argentina.

There are so many questions to be answered across the Tasman in the next couple hours, so it’s great to have company and we hope you enjoy our coverage.



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