Deans demands Wallabies lift lineouts - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Deans demands Wallabies lift lineouts

04/11/2009 05:22:47 PM Comments (0)

Robbie Deans is demanding his Wallabies get their lineout functioning or face dire consequences against England in Saturday's Cook Cup Test at Twickenham.

Australia's set piece in last Saturday's 32-19 defeat to New Zealand in Tokyo was highly erratic, the Wallabies losing several of their own throws to repeatedly squander attacking opportunities inside the All Blacks' red zone.

Often when they managed to secure possession, it was messy ball which the All Blacks pilfered anyway.

Deans, with enough problems on his plate already, doesn't care to discuss reasons for the lineout malfunctions. He just wants it sorted by the weekend for a match where lineouts are likely to feature prominently.

"Whatever it is, it's not good enough," the coach snapped.

"It is one area where we will need to be better, particularly up against a side that does play a territorial game and who have a player like (Jonny) Wilkinson who likes to kick them around the ground," he said.

"So that will be a priority."

Lock James Horwill conceded the Wallabies had strayed from the game plan in Tokyo and needed to lift - literally - against England.

"We just probably didn't back what we'd been working on," Horwill said.

"It was something that has been quite strong for us all year and we went away from what we wanted to do.

"If we can get our drill right, we feel our lineout can function very well and we can give some good first-phase ball for the backs to work off.

"We need to make sure we're jumping to our max height and make sure that each throw is at the tip of where we need to be.

"If we drop it short, we know England have got a good lineout and if we don't lift or make sure we push it to the max height, then we're going to struggle to win all our ball."

Utility forward Dean Mumm, who came off the bench in Tokyo, best highlighted the perils of a poor lineout before captaining the Wallabies from the second row against Gloucester on Tuesday night.

"Looking at a couple of the games played this year with the English team and also in the domestic competition, you're looking at sort of 14, 16 lineouts a game, which is a lot compared from where we come from," Mumm said.

"So increasingly the lineout is going to be more important, so we need to be able to control that area well and to call to space and those sort of things are important.

"The lineout wasn't great at the weekend and it certainly put a lot pressure back on the team.

"It's very important for the boys to get it right on Saturday."

If they don't and lose possession in their own territory - and then the Wallabies continue to infringe at the breakdown like they did to allow All Blacks five-eighth Dan Carter to boot six penalties - expect Wilkinson to have a field day at Twickenham.

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