Clinical Australia scores 4 tries, beats Wales 29-21
CARDIFF, Wales (AP) Australia fed off Wales’ errors and ran in four tries in a clinical 29-21 victory in Cardiff on Saturday, extending its winning streak over the Welsh to 13 test matches.
The Wallabies have played seven tests since their opponent’s last, and their match sharpness told in the first half, when Wales paid the price for failing to clear its lines at restarts and its ambitious, high-tempo game plan.
Hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau rolled over at the back of a maul, lock Adam Coleman crashed over from close range, and flanker Michael Hooper squirmed over the line at an overlap to help Australia to 22-13 at halftime.
Wales had the better of the second half under the Principality Stadium roof, but was hit by a sucker-punch when fullback Kurtley Beale stole the ball from Steff Evans and raced 60 meters to ground between the posts in the 63rd minute.
The Australians stretched their unbeaten run to seven tests – including a victory over world champion New Zealand last month – and haven’t lost to Wales since 2008, a run that includes eight straight wins in Cardiff. They also play Australia and Scotland this month.
The match finished on a sour note for Wales as star center Jonathan Davies was taken off on a motorized stretcher after the fulltime whistle with an apparent ankle injury.
Evans scored the only try for the Welsh, whose new-look approach – featuring playmakers at No. 10 and No. 12 – led to a refreshing positivity behind the scrum.