REPORT: Ireland defeat Australia to add to 2016 wins over All Blacks and South Africa

The teams met in Dublin earlier today

BY Simon Maguire 19:33 Saturday 26 November 2016, 19:33 26 Nov 2016

Ireland have added a win over Australia to a victory each against the other Southern Hemisphere giants New Zealand and South Africa in 2016 with a 27-24 triumph at the Aviva Stadium.

They attacked the Wallabies with intent from the start turning down two early shots at goal to go to the corner.

Although both efforts rebuffed by Australia it set the scene for an Irish performance that brought the same level of intensity they showed against New Zealand.  

Jared Payne almost scored early on after a jinking run through a few tackles and as Ireland came away with 3 points after being camped in the Australian half for most of the opening spell.

A careless clear-out at a ruck by Dean Mumm on Furlong eventually led to a yellow card which Ireland punished with a try.

Ireland spent the remainder of the half pretty much camped in the Australian territory. They spread the ball wide only for Zebo (who came on for Kearney) to grubber through the Australian defence where Earls gathered and fed the ball to a galloping Henderson who ran in from about 10 metres out. Jackson converted to make it 10-0

Ireland's Iain Henderson scores the first try of the game
Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

More pressure from Ireland led to a penalty which Jackson kicked down the line. The resulting line-out maul failed and a poor pass was gathered by Ringrose who jinked his way through a ragged Australian defence to score his first test try. Jackson converted to make it 17-0.

Ireland's Garry Ringrose scores his sides second try
Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Australia ventured into Irish territory and almost scored only for Best to halt the attack.

Haylett-Petty broke in just before the break to make it 17-7 after Foley converted. 

A revamped Ireland came out for the second half with Marmion on for Payne. Earls moved into the centre and Ireland geared up for an Australian onslaught. 

Australia sensed the confusion in the Irish ranks and targeted the makeshift wingers. The Australians were denied a try in the corner in the opening moments of the second half but the referee blew for a forward pass and the score was chalked off. 

They weren't to be denied minutes later when Kuridrani touched down in the same area with Foley converting from the touchline 

Ireland made their way back up the field and slotted a penalty after repeated infringements by the visitors.

Australia broke down the field and substitute Naivalu ran in underneath the posts which converted gave Australia a 21-20 lead. Another penalty extended their advantage to 24-20. 

Ireland came back into the match and stemmed the Australian tide when Earls slipped into the corner after brilliant work from the replacements, Peter O'Mahony and Cian Healy in particular. 

Ireland's Keith Earls scores a try
Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Paddy Jackson added the extras to make it Ireland 27-24. The Australian onslaught was relentless but the green wall stood firm. 

It came down to the final play of the match with Australia needing to run the length of the field to secure victory. Ireland applied pressure on the Wallaby scrum as the seconds ticked on and won a penalty to win the game.

An exceptional performance from a patched-together team in the second half shows how far Joe Schmidt has taken this squad.

Ireland have now beaten South Africa, New Zealand and Australia within the space of six months. Bring on the Six Nations.  

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