Autumn Internationals Preview – Wales v Samoa, England v Australia and Scotland v South Africa

14/11/2012 no comments »
Autumn Internationals Preview – Wales v Samoa, England v Australia and Scotland v South Africa

Wales v Samoa on Friday, November 16th at 19:30

These two have played each other eight times in the past and Wales lead 5-3 going into their ninth battle. On the opening weekend, Wales were defeated on home soil by a strong Argentinean side that ran out 26-12 winners which resulted in them being booed off by their own fans at full-time. The defeat has left Wales interim coach Rob Howley with one win from five starts despite leading the way at half time, but the current Six Nation holders were unable to continue this after the break. Samoa didn’t play on the opening weekend, so the hard hitters will be looking to get off to a flying start in Cardiff and pick up a victory against a disheartened Welsh side.

England v Australia on Saturday, November 17th at 14:30

In this second of four fixtures in the Autumn Internationals, England will take on Australia at Twickenham and fixtures between these two countries are never dull and this one promises to be no different. The fixture two years ago, proved to be a classic when England triumphed over the Wallabies 35-18 including a 90 metre try from Chris Ashton. Ashton is now available again for Stuart Lancaster’s side after completing his suspension and it gives the coach a selection headache ahead of the game against Australia. In their first game of this series, England outclassed Fiji in a seven-try rout beating them 52-12. Toby Flood notched an impressive 18 points from the boot while the tries were scored by Tom Johnson, Ugo Monye and two each from Manu Tuilagi and winger Charlie Sharples. Australia on the other hand were at the wrong side of a battering by France, losing 33-6. Australia was unbeaten in 5 against France, but the Wallabies were unable to take their chances and that proved costly.

Scotland v South Africa on Saturday, November 17th at 14:30

The last time South Africa visited Murrayfield, they were beaten 21-17 thanks to an all round spirited performance from the hosts. Andy Robinson’s Scottish side are fresh from an unbeaten tour of the southern hemisphere in the summer, beating Australia, Fiji and Samoa along the way. In contrast, the South Africans have a recent performance history they want to forget following a disappointing time in the formerly known Tri-Nations, newly named the inaugural Rugby Championship, in which they finished third and only managed two wins out of six matches. Last Sunday, Scotland suffered a heavy defeat against the All Blacks, New Zealand 22-51. Scotland has never beaten New Zealand in 107 years, so they were strong outsiders to gain anything, although they did become the first side to score three tries against the All Blacks in 2012. South Africa had to battle for their victory at the weekend in Dublin, when they had to fight back from nine points behind. The South Africans were a much better team in the second-half so will want to start off brightly on this occasion and not have to come from behind again.

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