England v Australia, November 17
Moore: Wallabies' scrum must improve
November 16, 2012
Stephen Moore is fully aware of the threat of England's scrum © Getty Images
Wallabies hooker Stephen Moore has said that their scrum must improve on Saturday against England after the French dominated that area of the game last weekend.
Australia crashed to a 33-6 defeat to Les Bleus on Saturday with the scrum faltering throughout. Moore will start from the bench against England on Saturday, with Tatafu Polota Nau preferred, but with 73 caps to his name, he knows better than most the ins and outs of that part of the game. The loss to France was their fourth in eight games and Moore admits that they need to re-find their form in the scrum sooner rather than later and adapt to the differing techniques in the northern hemisphere.
"It's something we have to improve from last weekend no doubt," Moore said. "I think for the most part this year our scrum's been pretty good and it's been consistent. We took a step back last week but we didn't adapt to the style of scrummaging which is a little bit different over here and it's going to be the same this week, so we need to make those adjustments and make sure it's right.
And despite David Campese's stinging criticism of the Wallabies side making the headlines on Thursday, Moore has not taken the former Australian winger's words to heart. "There's no time to worry about what people outside the group are saying about us. The only way we can win on the weekend is to go out with the guys involved, get it together and put a performance on and nothing externally is going to influence that."
If Moore gets the nod from the bench then he will come face-to-face with either Tom Youngs or David Paice. Youngs answered any potential worries regarding his lineouts with 14 from 14 in his first Test against Fiji last weekend and he has been on Moore's radar for a while despite his relatively recent transition from centre to hooker.
"We watched bits and pieces of his [Youngs] game," Moore said. "One of my best mates played with him in Nottingham and I think Youngs might have even be playing at centres then, but he told me to keep an eye out for him and it's great that he's getting a run and it'll be good to play against him. And I played against David Paice at school as he grew up in Brisbane."
With the battle for top-four supremacy ahead of the draw for the 2015 World Cup hanging over this batch of autumn Tests, the pressure is on Australia to bounce back against England on Saturday. And Moore wants his side to put on a performance that will make their band of supporters proud.
"It was a disappointing performance no doubt and we don't want to replicate that at the weekend or else we will get the same result, so it's an important game for us in that sense. There's always a big rivalry with England in any sport and this is no different and we want to make sure that the people who go to Twickenham in gold jerseys and the people who are watching from home are proud of our performance at the weekend."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Tom Hamilton is the Assistant Editor of ESPNscrum.