We’re only one week away until the 2017 Rugby Championship kicks off in Sydney where the Wallabies will host the All Blacks at ANZ Stadium. That match takes place on Saturday morning and later that day, the Springboks host Argentina at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth.
Much of the focus, of course, has been on the Sydney clash, mostly due to the rivalry between the countries and the narrative surrounding the state of rugby in Australia.
Nobody is giving the Wallabies a hope of defeating Steve Hansen’s side but the Michael Cheika will relish the fact that his team are being written off and you would expect Australia to put in a committed performance at least.
Of course, the All Blacks have suffered two Test defeats in the space of eight months, to Ireland and the British and Irish Lions. The Lions pushed the All Blacks all the way in June and July which proved that there are some frailties in the All Blacks team.
Australian winger, Dane Haylett-Petty, says the Wallabies will follow the Lions blueprint of defeating the All Blacks, a game plan which revolves around putting them under pressure, in both defence and attack.
“The Lions definitely showed that the key to beating the All Blacks is putting them under pressure, whether it’s in defence or in attack,” Haylett-Petty told Fox Sports.
“We’ve learned some lessons from last year and that’s what we plan to do, no matter what part of the game of it is, we’re going to look to put them under a lot of pressure.”
Haylett-Petty also believes that the Wallabies disappointing season could be put down to their inability to produce a full 80-minute performance though they are determined to rectify this against the All Blacks.
The Wallabies have been focusing on their fitness for large parts of their training camp preparations so one would hope this would go some way to solving this issue.
In addition to this, the Australian winger believes that the Wallabies have the best attack in the world and that they will pose serious problems to Hansen’s side in this regard.
“The Lions showed that they’re definitely beatable, and at different points of last year our attack was some of the best in the world,” Haylett-Petty said.
“We’ve got the attack that can really test the All Blacks, and any team in world rugby.
“It’s more about putting together 80-minute performances which we didn’t quite do against the All Blacks last year, and probably England.
All eyes will be on Sydney next Saturday to see if the Wallabies can somehow restore some pride into Australian rugby which has really been suffering of late.