Wallabies 'indulged in replays of win' - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wallabies 'indulged in replays of win'

By Darren Walton 13/11/2009 08:15:34 AM Comments (0)

Straight-shooting prop Ben Alexander has revealed how over-indulging in replays of Australia's Tri Nations triumph over the world champion Springboks sent the Wallabies crashing back to earth - but also on course for the coveted grand slam.

Alexander frankly conceded how too many viewings of the highlights reel from the 21-6 win in Brisbane led directly to their downfall a fortnight later when New Zealand embarrassed cocky Australia 33-6.

The Wallabies are using the humbling experience as motivation ahead of Sunday's do-or-die grand-slam confrontation with Six Nations champion Ireland in Dublin.

"I think a few guys, and me personally, would be a bit guilty of watching maybe the replay of that South African game a bit too much," Alexander said on Thursday.

"We thought 'oh look how well we did there' and thought the job's done and dusted and we lived in that moment a bit too much.

"We beat the world champs and thought it should translate. They hadn't lost to New Zealand, so we thought we should be able to beat New Zealand then.

"That will put us in good stead to learn that lesson that we had from the high of Brisbane to the low of Wellington two weeks later.

"Putting the win behind you is a key."

Winning back-to-back Tests against the world's leading sides has been Australia's Achilles heel throughout Robbie Deans's coaching reign.

The continual letdowns are driving Deans mad, but Alexander is hopeful the Jekyll and Hyde Wallabies have finally woken up to themselves.

"We've forgotten about the England win (last Saturday) and are 100 per cent focused on Ireland now," he said.

"Our preparation was good for the Wellington game but you've just got to be off one per cent in a Test match and that's all it takes; you'll get killed," he said.

"It was a massive lesson for some guys who have only played mostly Super 14 footy, where you can be one per cent off and still win."

Not looking back, the Wallabies have barely seen any footage of their 18-9 victory at Twickenham.

"We've only watched a few scrums," Alexander said, nominating continued dominance at the set piece - a weakness in the past but now a strength for Australia - as another key in the Wallabies's quest to conquer England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales on successive weekends for the first time since 1984.

"The great scrummaging sides are consistent week in, week out against every opposition and they never take a backward step," he said. "That's what great scrummagers and great packs are.

"We haven't taken a backward step lately but the moment we start reading our own press and start thinking that we're the best, and not putting in the work and doing the study that we've been doing, that's when we'll start taking backward steps.

"All the hard work that we've done in the last couple of years will be undone."

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