Wallaby forwards get ‘pass mark’ against Boks

Australia’s often maligned forwards earned a pass mark against the formidable Springbok pack in last weekend’s Tri-Nations Test in Cape Town, line-out general Dan Vickerman said on Monday.

The Wallabies were praised for their inspirational defensive effort as South Africa got home 22-19 on the back of two late drop goals at Newlands.

The Australians returned home on Monday disappointed by their last-gasp defeat but encouraged by their courageous display ahead of September’s World Cup in France.

South Africa-born lock Vickerman is looking to the Wallaby pack carrying on their form against World Cup favourites New Zealand in Melbourne in their next Tri-Nations Test on June 30.

“All week the Springboks were talking up how they were going to dominate us up front and the scrum was a weakness and an Achilles heel and all that sort of stuff,” Vickerman told reporters at the airport.

“I definitely think we got a pass mark, but we can’t be too blase about it. We’ve got to hopefully maintain this standard and then improve from there and just keep moving forward.”

Not long back from a shoulder reconstruction, Vickerman was another standout player in Cape Town and said he was gradually building towards his physical peak.

However, the giant lock said Australia still had “a few bits and pieces” in their line-out to address heading into the Tri-Nations/Bledisloe Cup Test with New Zealand.


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