SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australia coach Dave Rennie has once again become a frustrated man after his youth team pointed to a known flaw and recorded their third draw in six tests this season.
Two weeks ago against Argentina, Australia’s failure to turn the pressure into points and snuffed out a game that allowed Pumas to save a 15-15 draw.
On Saturday against the same opposition, the Wallabies again dominated possession and field position but were seven points behind entering the final quarter before bouncing back to 16-16.
The other flop was in discipline and after captain Michael Hooper was shown a yellow card, key Lukhan Salakaia-Loto was shown a red card for taking a hard hit to give his team-mates some trouble as they caught up to the game in the final 20 minutes.
“Conditions were challenging tonight, they defended very well and discipline let us down at important moments,” said Rennie.
“We showed a lot of character tonight, seven points dropped and reduced to 14 guys and I think we controlled it pretty well, played in the right places and got our prize.
“(But) we have to turn the pressure into points. We have a chance, right? And they can grab theirs. “
Reece Hodge will be in the spotlight after missing a late, potentially match-winning conversion, a penalty in a draw against New Zealand and twice against Argentina this year.
“I feel a little sorry for him,” said Rennie. “He kicked well… and there wasn’t much in line for that shot. It would be better if he kicked it, but that’s how it was. “
Rennie took charge at the start of the season and will be looking to build the team for the 2023 World Cup after being knocked out in a disappointing quarter-final in Japan last year.
“We have a long way to go, we will get much better,” he added.
“There’s no lack of heart, there’s no lack of effort, but we have to be much more clinical. It’s frustrating, but I’m certainly proud of the efforts in the last 20 games with 14 players. “
Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Ken Ferris
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