Foley backs grand slam hopes

Date published: October 23 2016

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Australia fly-half Bernard Foley believes they can achieve a grand slam despite a difficult year on the Test stage.

No Australian team has won the grand slam – Tests against Wales, Scotland, Ireland and England – since the 1984 team coached by Alan Jones. The Wallabies have only embarked on a grand slam tour on two occasions since.

In 2009, Australia tripped up against Ireland with a 20-20 draw, while in 2013 under Ewen McKenzie they were defeated 20-13 by England.

Australia lost 37-10 to the All Blacks in their final Bledisloe Cup Test of the season, but Foley thinks they can bounce back on their end-of-year tour and win an elusive grand slam.

“Yeah I think it’s definitely possible,” Foley said.

“I think for us this year has been challenging, we can’t sugar-coat it or anything else. It’s been a real challenge. The tour is something that’s going to be really exciting, a lot of guys doing their first spring tour. The fact that it’s a grand slam is massive. (There will be) no easy Test matches but I think the best thing is the resilience of this squad. We’ve worked our way through a lot this year.”

Foley moved back to fly-half against New Zealand after playing at 12 for a few Tests and said he was happy to be wearing the number 10 jersey again.

“I enjoyed playing No.12, it was a good challenge [but] I probably do feel more comfortable at 10,” Foley said. “We went in there with a pretty distinct plan. We just lacked that execution at that end of the field. We were unable to just get that last pass to stick or score that try.”

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