Thu, Jul 11, 2013 - Page 18 News List

All Blacks deadline hangs over McKenzie

Reuters, MELBOURNE

Rugby league convert Israel Folau also offers a ready replacement in the back three for O’Connor’s attacking drive.

Improving the Wallabies’ pack to at least match the All Blacks at set pieces might be McKenzie’s stiffest task, as seen by the collapse of Australia’s scrum against the Lions in the third Test.

McKenzie, who won 51 caps for Australia as a tighthead prop in the 1980s and 1990s, will at least appreciate the job at hand, but the Wallabies have no match for the likes of Tony Woodcock, Keven Mealamu and Owen Franks, who would be likely to form the All Blacks’ front row.

Following Eddie Jones and John Connolly, New Zealand’s Deans became the third coach to be ousted in the wake of a scrum meltdown and McKenzie’s ability to restore morale to his pack may be key to avoiding another humiliation in Sydney.

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