Burke in sensational Wallaby return
October 28, 2000

Matthew Burke has made a sensational return to the Australian team scoring 24 points in their 64-13 victory over a Japan Presidents XV in Tokyo.

Burke has missed all the Wallabies Tests this year but showed he was keen to regain a spot in the team with a first class display that included two tries and seven conversions.

The man who succeeded Burke at fullback, Chris Latham, was also in great form touching down for three tries as the Wallabies bagged ten in all before 10,000 supporters at Chichibu Stadium.

The Australians now face a much tougher assignment with Tests against France, Scotland and England over the next three weekends.

"When you look at the Wallabies the last time when we won the World Cup, we have now got nine of those players, and we have a new era as far as the team is concerned," Wallaby coach Rod Macqueen said. "I don't like to call it 're-building', because the majority of players on the team have been with us throughout the time and we've got a lot of confidence.

"Towards the end of next year, we will have a team probably 80 to 90 percent okay for the next World Cup. We have a very hard task ahead of this in Europe, and we were very happy with the result. We started to get our combinations working, which is a good thing for us to work on in the upcoming tour."

Australia 64 (Chris Latham 12, 55, 58, Jeremy Paul 39, 46, Sam Cordingley 60, Stirling Mortlock 66, 79, Matthew Burke 68, 75. Conversions: Matthew Burke 12, 39, 55, 58, 60, 66, 75) d Japanese President's XV 13 (Tries: Andrew Plastow 63. Conversions: Stephen Miln 63. Penalties: Stephen Miln 7, 14.)
Half-time: 14-6. Att: 12,000
Referee: Paul Honiss (Nzl)

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