Australia's defence vital to beat Ireland in series-decider - Michael Hooper

Michael Hooper is looking forward to the deciding Test against Ireland
Michael Hooper is looking forward to the deciding Test against Ireland
©PA

Australia skipper Michael Hooper believes defence will be vital to the team's fortune in the series-deciding final Test against Ireland to be played in Sydney on Saturday.

The series is currently levelled at 1-1 with Australia and Ireland winning the games in Brisbane and Melbourne respectively.

In 2016 June internationals, Australia were whitewashed by England for the first time and Michael Cheika's men will now be hoping to avoid a series defeat at home for the first time in 38 years when they face Joe Schmidt's men.

"Controlling the moments when the Irish have the ball with our defence and how we're able to get the ball back off them.

"Dealing with their kicking game and their smarts around the field. They've got class players across their back-line and they steer the forwards around so well.

"Ireland are such a good team, number two in the world, so we know they're going to have points where they're controlling the game. How we steal that back as quickly as possible is really important."

Overall, these two teams have faced each other 35 times with Australia winning 22 while Ireland clinching 12 wins with one ending in a draw.

 

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