The Wallabies extended their good fortune during the most recent spring tour outing, following a win in Japan with another over the Welsh in Cardiff with a 29 – 21 victory that was in doubt until a game-sealing try with 10 minutes remaining.
In the lead-up to the game, no one was expecting the Welsh Test to be as easy as was the game in Japan against the Cherry Blossoms.
Michael Hooper was banished the sin-bin late in the game, which somewhat overshadowed the reality that Hooper is the most prolific try scorer in almost 120 years of Australian international Test rugby.
He scored his 15th Test try in the first half with a 20 m run that was some of his best.
He passed Rocky Elsom and Jeremy Paul, both with 14 Test tries. Hooper has played 77 Tests and appears every bit as eager as when he made his debut, so it is a good bet that Hooper will put more distance betwixt t him and his predecessors when he moves on the 2019 Rugby World Cup for more Test action.
He was sent off for 10 minutes for a ruck offense, leaving his side to make do with 14 men beginning with the 67th minute.
With a succinctness possible only by a few, Hooper afterward said, “It was a very long 10 minutes. It’s becoming a bit of a thing for us against this Welsh team because there’s been a couple of times where our team has just hung in with a lot of character.”
Hooper was referring to the 2015 World Cup where the Wallabies were down to 13 players in Twickenham that resulted in a 15 – 6 win for Australia.
“This is a really satisfying win and the insurance of defence really does show the character of the team. The willingness of team to get off the ground and work for each other was hugely pleasing,” Hooper said.
The next game of the tour will be at that same Twickenham when the Wallabies meet the Brits.