Five things we learned from Wallaroos-Fijiana

Wallaroos confident of putting Pac Four behind them with Fijiana victory

Written by Nathan Williamson, courtesy of Source article
Wallaroos confident of putting Pac Four behind them with Fijiana victory

Wallaroos captain Michaela Leonard is confident the four fresh faces in the side can help lift the side as they hunt for their first win of 2024 against Fijiana.

Coach Jo Yapp has called Brumbies trio Biola Dawa, Lydia Kavoa and Allana Sikimeti into the 23 for Saturday alongside Reds spark Nat Wright.

Tickets to Saturday’s Wallaroos-Wallabies double-header in Sydney available here!

Canberra-born lock Leonard is excited about what they can bring to the squad after a disappointing Pacific Four series.

“It’s really exciting and some really deserving players, all girls that you want out on the field and people you want to play next to,” she told reporters.

“They really display that Wallaroos culture that we love to see, big energy from them.

“Expecting some real excitement and big hits from Lydia and Allana, Nattie scooting around the ruck and Biola is a really fast and strong winger so expecting some big things.”

The Wallaroos were left hurt after a 67-19 defeat to New Zealand in May, with Leonard lamenting the performance and the winless Pac Four series.

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“There was a big review process after those games from the Pac Four. What we highlighted was there was a lot of opportunity that we left out there,” the lock explained.

“When we got our systems right and executed how we wanted to, things came away positively for us.

“Looking back on those games, some little areas around our breakdown, set-piece execution and collision dominance have been big focuses for us over the last two weeks.

“We’ve made big improvements in those areas and hopefully everyone else will see that this weekend.”

Australia have not lost to Fijiana before, although the introduction of Fijian Drua in Super Rugby W has Leonard wary of what to expect on their day.

“They are exciting and they play that unconventional, free flowing Rugby so I think (the) benefits for us is that all the girls have had a chance to play against a lot of the players throughout that Super Rugby W campaign,” she added.

“It’d be huge for us to come away with this weekend. The doubleheader on home soil, nothing really gets better. Hopefully, there’s a big crowd out there and an opportunity for us and the men to put out some good footy and get Rugby and everyone behind us to set up a big back end of the year.”

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