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INTERNATIONAL WRAP: Australia 26 – 4 New Zealand; Tonga Invitational 14 – 6 Great Britain

Australia 26 – 4 New Zealand, WIN Stadium, Wollongong. Friday October 25th.

Australia comfortably won the Trans-Tasman Test in Wollongong. The Kangaroos led 12-4 at halftime, with tries to Josh Addo-Carr and Tyson Frizell. Canberra’s Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad (in his Kiwi debut) scored New Zealand’s only try of the game shortly before the break. Damien Cook and James Tedesco added second half tries, with Latrell Mitchell kicking five goals from six.

Australia had a whopping 58% possession, helped by the Kiwis’ 36 missed tackles and 13 errors. The win completed a hat-trick for Kangaroos captain Boyd Cordner, also leading NSW to State of Origin victory and the Sydney Roosters to the NRL Premiership.

Australia 26
Tries: Josh Addo-Carr, Tyson Frizell, Damien Cook, James Tedesco
Goals: Latrell Mitchell 5/6
Drop Goals: n/a

New Zealand 4
Tries: Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad
Goals: Shaun Johnson 0/1
Drop Goals: n/a

Embed from Getty Images

Tonga Invitational 14 – 6 Great Britain, Waikato Stadium, Hamilton. Saturday October 26th.

The Tonga Invitational XIII upset the Great Britain Lions in Hamilton. Motivated by a pro-Tongan crowd (a sea of red flags and jerseys), Tonga led 12-0 at halftime with tries to Michael Jennings and Sione Katoa. The second try was a great piece of improvised footy as Tonga threw it around on the halftime bell. Siosiua Taukeiaho kicked his third goal to stretch the lead to 14-0 midway through the second half. Canberra’s John Bateman scored with 10 minutes left to give the Lions a chance, but Tonga’s defence (making 330 tackles at an 85.7 effectiveness rate) held on.

Tonga Invitational 14
Tries: Michael Jennings, Sione Katoa
Goals: Siosiua Taukeiaho 3/3
Drop Goals: n/a

Great Britain 6
Tries: John Bateman
Goals: Gareth Widdop
Drop Goals: n/a

Embed from Getty Images

Next Saturday sees a massive triple-header at Auckland’s Eden Park. Samoa play Fiji, Great Britain play New Zealand, and Australia play the Tonga Invitational.

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