Flatley in stitches after Wallaby trial - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Flatley in stitches after Wallaby trial

By Melissa Woods 03/10/2003 09:03:45 PM Comments (0)

Any time Wallabies centre Elton Flatley needs a reminder there's a queue of his teammates waiting to take his position during the Rugby World Cup he only needs to look in the mirror.

Flatley had four stitches inserted in a cut above his eye after the Wallabies' third and final internal trial at their Coffs Harbour training base ahead of next Friday's World Cup opener against Argentina.

And he wasn't the only player to leave the paddock battered and bruised.

While declining to elaborate on individual performances or positions, Australian coach Eddie Jones said competition was intense across the field, particularly in the tight five.

The 30-man squad was divided into two for the 40 minute simulated game, with strong winds at Coffs Harbour making playing conditions tough.

Rather than the "probable" side to face Argentina taking on the "possibles", Jones continued to mix and match the line-ups to put extra pressure on his players.

"You can never make it exactly like a game but I think the pace and intensity today was as close to a game as you can get," Jones said.

"Some of the hitting was probably about 80 per cent.

"We were happy with the standard of play, it was definitely an improvement on our last game up here, and an improvement on Darwin."

What also pleased Jones was the performance of some of the newcomers to the Australian squad, namely uncapped backrower John Roe and prop Al Baxter, who has only played 40 minutes of Test rugby.

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