Japan next as Wallaroos prepare for World Cup

Wallaroos captain Shannon Parry has seen enough to get excited about the Women’s Rugby World Cup in October, saying her side’s accelerated rise can make up for a three-year drought.

Australia face Japan on the Gold Coast on Tuesday after making their 11-man debut in a win over Fiji on Friday – their first test in nearly 1,000 days.

The win, built on impressive backline skills and competent defense, bolstered a team that hadn’t been worn out since 2019 after tours and tournaments fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Number 10 Arabella McKenzie was assured while centers Georgina Friedrichs and Waratah teammate Pauline Piliae were brilliant inside dominant wingers Ivania Wong and Mahalia Murphy.

“It’s the first step for us on the journey,” Parry said of the World Cup in New Zealand later this year.

“What we’ve put on the pitch is something we can work with; we have a number of games and camps, enough time to build combinations and there’s no reason we can’t. to be in the final.

“I’m 100 per cent excited (by what I saw); there was a good balance, the execution just let us down a bit but we have to start somewhere and that’s a good place to start. “

Although he has a larger squad at his disposal, coach Jay Tregonning said his second game in charge won’t be about shuffling the cards to see what else he’s been hiding in the game.

“Every Test match is special; we want to play our best team in every Test,” he said ahead of Monday’s squad selection.

Japan, who beat Fijiana last week, will provide a different kind of challenge in what will be the second of seven Tests for the Wallaroos ahead of the Cup.

They will also face the United States, Canada and then have three games against New Zealand to measure themselves against.

“A lot of technical things to improve but the effort, works for each other defensively,” he said.

“That’s what’s going to make us a great rugby team. But there are loads of improvements; the more we can get together, the more the girls will soar.”

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