New Zealand 33-6 Australia, Tri-Nations, September 19
Barnes prepared for dressing down
September 20, 2009
Wallabies centre Berrick Barnes reflects on his side's latest defeat to New Zealand © Getty Images
Wallabies centre Berrick Barnes is prepared for a flogging both on and off the training field in the wake of his side's latest capitulation at the hands of the All Blacks.
Australia were condemned to the Tri-Nations wooden spoon following a 33-6 defeat at the hands of New Zealand in Wellington and as a result Barnes admits his side have weeks of hard work ahead of them before they embark on their end-of-year tour.
"We are going to cop it from a lot of people, and that's understandable when you put in a performance like that," said the 23-year-old. The Wallabies looked a shadow of the side that had upset the South Africans in Brisbane two weeks ago as they were outscored by three tries to nil and outplayed in every facet of the game.
Barnes knows immediate improvement is needed with another Bledisloe Cup match against the All Blacks in Tokyo at the end of next month and Tests against England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales on successive weekends in November to come.
"It's almost like a month of pre-season heading into the Tokyo game. I've no doubts (coach) Robbie (Deans) is going to be working us hard - that's for sure - and rightly so. We put in a really poor performance (in Wellington), and the All Blacks were good. We showed what we could do (in Brisbane) but we were ordinary (against New Zealand)."
Australia never got a foothold at Westpac Stadium as the New Zealand forwards ran roughshod over them and their backs threatened every time they got the ball in hand.
Captain George Smith, David Pocock and Rocky Elsom came off second best at the breakdown against Richie McCaw, Adam Thomson and Kieran Read. Even the All Blacks' suspect line-out functioned well and snaffled two of the Wallabies' throws. The set-piece dominance ensured clean ball was finally delivered to the All Blacks backs - something Daniel Carter, Ma'a Nonu and Co have been craving for weeks.
"I suppose when you sit around waiting for other people to do a few jobs, as a whole team you pay for it against these guys," said Barnes. "I thought they sustained pressure well through the breakdown and had patience -and Carter was good in the way he controlled the game, especially with the kicking when they were a man down as well."