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Five things we learned from Wallaroos
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Five things we learned from Wallaroos

Canada spoiled Jo Yapp’s first game as Wallaroos coach as they powered their way to a 33-14 victory in Sydney.

The Wallaroos were unable to back up their WXV heroics from the previous year and struggled to stop a dominant forward.

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So what have we learned?

1. Partying in the front row

It was fitting that all 33 points for Canada came from their forwards as they proved the difference.

Hooker Sara Cline was a key reason behind the Force’s success in Super Rugby W and her double reflected their dominance at the lineout, joined by props McKinley Hunt and DaLeaka Menin.

In stages they rolled the Australian peloton back 20 meters as they had little answer to their strength.

The Canadians forwards were tremendous in setting the pace early with their physicality, harassing the Wallaroos forwards on their pick-and-goes throughout the 80 minutes.

2. Work to do for the top four

The Wallaroos have been given a great barometer of how much work remains to be done if they want to consistently compete with the best in the world.

It was a rusty start to the Test season against a Canadian side who opened their account as the Super Rugby W season came to an end.

The Wallaroos’ 14 points were the most they scored against Canada, but they could not cope with the visitors’ fast ruck speed and physicality.

They will look to make the most of their chances against the US, who were defeated by New Zealand in Hamilton earlier in the day.

3. Pesi force

Siokapesi Palu’s transformation as a backrower has been a joy to watch as she finds a key spot in the Wallaroos pack.

Palu was the Wallaroos’ best attacking option in the first half, creating chances and looking dangerous when she was near the play.

She was denied a great try in the 15th minute as the Brumbies captain started before finishing strong in the corner after a knock-on earlier in the game.

Fellow winger Ash Marsters was also strong, while number eight Piper Duck endured a mountain of work.

4. Expose the space

Jo Yapp will be disappointed with the way the Australians failed to capitalize on the numbers early in the second following Maddy Grant’s yellow card.

With the match on the line, they conceded almost immediately as DaLeaka Menin snuck through the gap as they found themselves locked in a losing battle.

When they decided to throw the ball around, they looked dangerous even when Grant returned, only for the execution to fail them.

Moments like these are when you need to capitalize if you want to compete against the top teams in the world.

5. Yapp DNA is shown in spots

Wallaroos captain Michaela Leonard spoke of a great license to sensationalize, and it showed in glimpses throughout the match.

There were several times inside their 22 where they wanted to counter-attack instead of immediately clearing their line.

It’s a tricky game to play, with just nine days in camp for this Test and Clyne’s second try came from a loose pass close to their line that invited pressure while they were guilty of overthinking at times

But when it does, it will be exciting to watch with their exciting wingers and ball-playing backrowers.