The final game of the Autumn internationals sees Wales host an improving Australia in Cardiff.
Australia have had their problems this year, disappointing in the 4 nations tournament, however they have been steadily improving since the appointment of McKenkie and the return of Cooper at fly half. They are not without their problems though with the late night drinking on tour seeing players disciplined.
They have played some good rugby in the last month with good victories in both Italy and Ireland, while they could have beaten England, but for missed kicks a charge down and a foot in touch. They look to have a settled side now and despite this being the end of a long international period for them I can see them going well again.
Wales don’t seem to like these internationals, yes they have beat a poorArgentine side before struggling to a win v Tonga but they were outplayed by South Africa. The previous 3 years of these Autumn fixtures have seen not a single win. The injuries picked up so far will not help and despite the Lions romp in the final test with the majority of Welshmen in the side this is very different. The stars for the Lions were the centres, especially Davies who seemed to have all the answers, his loss is significant. Other stars like Halfpenny and Warburton have been out of form with Warburton lucky to be still having his place ahead of Tipuric.
2012: Australia won 14-12, Cardiff
2012: Australia won 20-19, Sydney
2012: Australia won 25-23, Gold Goast
2012: Australia won 27-19, Brisbane
2011: Australia won 24-18, Cardiff
2011: Australia won 21-18, Auckland
2010: Australia won 25-16, Cardiff
2009: Australia won 30-12, Cardiff
Wales: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Alex Cuthbert, 13 Owen Williams, 12 Scott Williams, 11 George North, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Mike Phillips, 8 Toby Faletau, 7 Sam Warburton (capt), 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Ian Evans, 4 Alun-Wyn Jones, 3 Rhodri Jones, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Gethin Jenkins.
Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Ryan Bevington, 18 Samson Lee, 19 Ryan Jones, 20 Justin Tipuric, 21 Rhodri Williams, 22 Rhys Priestland, 23 Liam Williams.
Australia: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Joe Tomane, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Christian Leali’ifano, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Ben Mowen (c), 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 James Horwill, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 James Slipper.
Replacements: 16 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17 Benn Robinson, 18 Ben Alexander, 19 Kane Douglas, 20 Dave Dennis, 21 Nic White, 22 Mike Harris, 23 Bernard Foley.
As much as Wales want to win this and end the hoodoo, they have too many key players out of form or injured and Australia can finish off the tour with a win of between 3-8pts
Best bet Australia by 1-12