Kiwi scrum the biggest test: Robinson - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Kiwi scrum the biggest test: Robinson

15/09/2009 07:32:06 PM Comments (0)

Fresh from conquering the Springboks pack, Wallabies prop Benn Robinson says Australia face a far more difficult task at scrum time against the All Blacks in the final Tri-Nations Test in Wellington on Saturday night.

Robinson laid further claim to the title of world's best loose-head when he repeatedly showed up Springboks captain and scrummaging opponent John Smit during the Wallabies' 21-6 victory over the Tri-Nations champions last Saturday.

Even after such a dominant performance in Perth, Robinson says the Wallabies front-row is preparing for a fiercer challenge against the hulking All Blacks, who lead the four match Bledisloe series 2-0.

"To play the Kiwis at home, it's a whole new ball game, they are the best scrum in the world at the moment," Robinson said on Tuesday.

"It's going to be such a tough area for us on the weekend and one that we know we really have to step up in and play to the best of our ability."

The All Blacks had the better of the Wallabies at scrum time during the last Bledisloe Test in Sydney, which Australia lost 19-18.

Out of favour tight-head prop Al Baxter was unceremoniously hauled from the field mid-match after conceding consecutive penalties during the set piece after being shown up by All Blacks prop Tony Woodcock.

Baxter, as a result, lost his position in the side to Ben Alexander.

Tatafu Polota-Nau has also since unseated Stephen Moore as starting hooker.

Robinson says Alexander, 24, faces a big challenge in asserting his dominance over the wily Woodcock.

"Experience plays a big part in it, especially against the Kiwis, we're still a fairly new front row combination," Robinson said.

"Benny's (Alexander) only in his third or fourth start, and he's got a big challenge there with Woodcock playing so many games, he's been on top of his game for a long time now.

"The games that (Alexander's) had under his belt will be a big help for him, the fact that he's got a lot of good aggression there will take him a long way."

Robinson said he and his fellow front rowers will adapt to the way the All Blacks play, and also to the referee's whistle.

"The beauty in the beast of scrummaging is that it changes all the time and that it's unique and a different challenge," Robinson said.

"The ability to adapt and to make sure that you can cope with different situations is a big part (of scrummaging) and a lot of that comes through experience.

"If we're getting picked up (by the referee) whether it's for going early, or binding we can adapt to that.

"We know we've got to step up, over in NZ scrummaging) sets a platform for the game."

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