WHAT THEY SAID: Wallaroos' instant reaction to thrilling Welsh win

Fri, Nov 3, 2023, 8:00 PM
Lachlan Grey
by Lachlan Grey

Australia's dramatic 25-19 win over Wales went down to the wire in Auckland with the Wallaroos stifling a late rolling maul to bag their second WXV1 win in as many weeks.

Best on ground Kaitlan Leaney was immense in the back row while try-scoring winger Ivania Wong, top centre Georgina Friedrichs, sharp-passing halfback Layne Morgan and forceful lock Sera Naiqama were among Australia's best.

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The win also marked a fitting farewell for Jay Tregonning, who leaves a legacy as the Wallaroos' most successful ever head coach with 7 wins from his 16 games in charge.

Here's what the players and coaches had to say to Sky Sports following Friday night's incredible WXV1 win at Mount Smart Stadium. 

Wallaroos Best on Ground Kaitlan Leaney:

"I'm just so proud of the girls. I can't believe it. We worked so hard all week and coming off the win last week, you know I think we shocked the world and we knew we'd have to back it up this week with a good performance

I couldn't be more proud of the girls. We stayed in there, we fought. We were down to 13 player and we just never gave up.

"We just had a really good week at training and I think every player knew their role and knew what we wanted to achieve out there, so I just went out there and did my job."

"We trusted our process, we did our jobs well and I wouldn’t be there without my team, my foundation and my support … my team got me here (and) it was a team effort."

Wallaroos captain Michaela Leonard:

"Yeah firstly I think we were just trying to check everyone's cardiac health, so I hope everyone's ok!"

"To Wales, incredible game, incredibly physical and you really showed it and probably highlighted some areas for us to improve on so thank you for that.

"To the girls, probably let ourselves down in terms of some disciple across the park but props to the girls for that Aussie battler attitude.

"We put it in, 13 on the field and we kept working and it came out in our favour.

"Jay (Tregonning) has been incredible for this group. He's come in with us in a transition period.

"We had a lot of our older more experienced girls retiring and obviously working towards a little more of a full-time professional platform.

"He's done really well with a group of relatively inexperienced young players to build our confidence, teach us how to be professional on and off the field and to keep us building.

"I think you can see that with our improvements over the past 12 months.

Wallaroos coach Jay Tregonning:

"Our finishers were outstanding when they came on, they did an awesome job.

"You know, obviously a couple of players down there for part of the game, and one player down there for a fair chunk.

"We've been talking about effort and it was evident out there today.

"I'm back school teaching next week so I'll get back to that. I definitely want to keep involved in high performance rugby as well and I'll see what opportunities come available.


Wallaroos 7 def by v England 42 on Friday 20 October, Sky Stadium, Wellington

Wallaroos 29 def France 20 on Saturday 28 October, Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin

Wallaroos 25 def Wales 19 on Friday 3 November, Mount Smart Stadium, Auckland

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