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Jones hopes there is no place like home

By Glenn Cullen 21/07/2003 08:07:39 PM Comments (0)

Wallaby coach Eddie Jones is hoping a return to Australia's home ground will kick-start his side's Tri Nations rugby campaign.

The Wallabies, who play the All Blacks at Telstra Stadium on Saturday night, were humbled against South Africa nine days ago only for New Zealand to crush the Springboks 52-16 in Pretoria on Saturday.

And while Australia has struggled against South Africa in the last six years, winning just four of their last 11 Tri Nations encounters, the Wallabies do have a history of turning things around against the All Blacks.

The Australians have won seven of the last 10 matches between the trans-Tasman rivals, including three of their past four encounters in Sydney.

Jones said playing in Sydney was a big plus coming off the 26-22 loss to South Africa.

"That's an advantage for us. We know we can do well in Sydney - if there is any ground that's a home one in Australia it's that one," he said.

"We are certainly very comfortable playing the All Blacks in Sydney.

"We don't have the advantage of England who always play at Twickenham, we play all around Australia and I think psychologically we (New Zealand and Australia) are the traditional rivals, certainly that could be a factor as well."

Jones said he couldn't exactly pinpoint why Australia had performed relatively badly against South Africa yet had consistently managed to lift against the All Blacks, who in turn have beaten the Springboks in eight of their last 11 clashes.

"I think New Zealand sides tend to play a lot more ball on the ground and perhaps we tend to play better against teams that do that," Jones said.

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2024 AAP

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