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Wallabies play out third draw



Australia has suffered a third drawn Test as part of the tri-nations series, playing out a 16-16 result at a wet BankWest Stadium on Saturday night.


Fullback Reece Hodge had a chance to win the game for the Wallabies from long range in the 79th minute, but went wide from 45 metres to again miss the opportunity to the last minute hero, having been faced with a similar scenario only two weeks ago in Newcastle.


The weather wasnt kind to the two teams as the heavens opened above Bankwest Stadium shortly after kick-off with Argentina battening down the hatches with some heroic defence.


A yellow card to powerhouse lock Marcos Kremer at the 15-minute mark gave Reece Hodge the chance to open the scoring and the fullback made no mistake.


Argentina were able to equalise with 14 men though as Nicolas Sanchez scraped a penalty of his own over the crossbar and the Pumas had the lead soon after when Wallabies skipper Michael Hooper was sent to the sin bin following an illegal clean out.


A powerful Pumas rolling maul then allowed Argentina to go coast-to-coast with Bautista Delguy fending and stepping his way through the Wallabies defence for the first try.


The ball turned into soap as the rain turned torrential in Parramatta, but Hodge was able to close the gap to seven points with a penalty on the stroke of half-time.


Australia turned to the boot in the second half as the game shifted into a battle for territory and the Wallabies won the early exchanges to allow Hodge to close the gap to 9-13.


A red card to Lukhan Salakaia-Loto didn’t help the Wallabies cause though with the reserve lock sent off following a shoulder to the head of Santiago Grondona of Argentina.


The Pumas edged the lead back out to seven points from the ensuing penalty, but the card fired the Wallabies into gear and Hooper barged over for a converted try with 15 minutes left, to level the scores.


Action went end-to-end in the closing stages before Hodge had the chance to win it with a penalty just before full-time but the ball stayed right of the posts to leave the final score locked at 16-all.


The result means New Zealand claims the 2020 tri-series, Argentina finishing second and Australia bottom of the table with one win, two losses and three draws.


IMAGE: Sky Sports.