Wallabies return to scene of famous win
September 15, 2009
John Eales is mobbed after kicking the winning points against the All Blacks in 2000 © Getty Images
New Zealand face Australia at Westpac Stadium in Wellington on Saturday with nothing but pride at stake after their loss to South Africa handed the Tri-Nations title to the Springboks.
The teams have met twice at Westpac Stadium, most recently when New Zealand snuck past the Wallabies with a 16-7 victory. The visitors will not need reminding of their other trip to Wellington however, as it produced one of their most famous victories of the modern era.
Legendary skipper and lock John Eales heaved over a last-gasp penalty to defeat the All Blacks 24-23 in 2000, wresting the initiative from their rivals in a classic Tri-Nations contest that ended with the world champion Wallabies lifting the silverware.
At Wellington's old ground, Athletic Park, New Zealand's greatest success came in the final Test between the sides staged there. The All Blacks coasted to a 43-6 win, with Jonah Lomu, Jeff Wilson, Christian Cullen and Justin Marshall all getting on the scoresheet.
The Wallabies' best result came a year before the Wallabies lifted the 1991 Rugby World Cup, when Phil Kearns and Michael Lynagh scored the points in a 21-9 victory.
Australia v New Zealand
All-time record: New Zealand won 90, Australia won 39, drawn 5
Biggest winning margin: NZ: 37, 43-6 at Wellington, 1996; Aus: 21, 28-7 at Sydney, 1999
Highest score: NZ: 50 (50-21) at Sydney, 2003; Aus: 35 (35-39) at Sydney, 2000
Most tries: NZ: 9 (38-13) at Dunedin, 1936; Aus: 5 (30-16) at Auckland, 1978 and (35-39) at Sydney, 2000.
Longest winning sequence: NZ: 9 (1936-47), Aust: 3 (1978-80, 1991-92, 2000-01)
Most points (individual): NZ: Andrew Mehrtens 202; Aus: Matt Burke 176
Most tries (individual): NZ: 8 Doug Howlett, Ian Kirkpatrick, Christian Cullen; Aus: 8 David Campese
Most points in a Test: NZ: 29 Andrew Mehrtens at Auckland, 1999; Aus: 24 Matt Burke at Brisbane, 1996