If you love ball games that involve ferocious tackles, you need to cancel all of your plans for the 1st November 2014 and get your rugby-loving tush down to Twickenham. Kicking off the Autumn Internationals is the hotly anticipated match between Australia and the Barbarians (or the Wallabies versus the Baa-Baas, to all you rugger fans). The Wallabies have one of the most impressive backsides – sorry, backlines – in world rugby, and the Barbarians have a more fearsome attack than a fleet of Angry Birds with Uzis. This match is sure to be an explosive contest between two of the most talented egg-tossing teams in the world.
After a historic defeat against Argentina in Mendoza, the Wallabies will be fired up to make amends and silence all of their critics. With turmoil on and off the pitch including a string of injuries, there certainly will be something to prove on the day. You know what they say: absence makes the team grow stronger (or something like that).
Beating the Baa-Baas will not be an easy task, however, as Nick Cummins – aka the Honey Badger – is set to start against his old Wallaby team-mates. They’re going to have to stay compact in defence, because the Honey Badger is crazy.
There is also a lot at stake for the Baa-Baas. Last time the two teams met in 2011, Australia trounced them 60-11. There were glimpses of the trademark Barbarian dash and dazzle on the day, but most of that was lost to a murky sub-plot of yellow cards, off-the-ball spats and crass handling. The Barbarians will be keen to restore some pride, not least because John Kirwan has been named coach for this Killik Cup clash.
Kirwan is an All Black, and given the Trans-Tasman history shared by the two nations, there’s sure to be no love lost. I mean, how would you feel if France tried to sell the UK on eBay? Or if they stole Stephen Fry and made him French? There are some things Kiwis just don’t forget, and no matter how many films of Lord of the Rings they make or how good AC/DC are, they’ll still want to destroy their rivals on the pitch. We wouldn’t be surprised if Kirwan spent all of his training sessions teaching the Barbarians to Haka.
So for a chance to see the mercurial backs Israel Folau, Kurtley Beale, Will Genia and Adam Ashley-Cooper of the Wallabies against England’s Matt Stevens, and Springboks CJ van der Linde, Coenie Oosthuizen and Heinrich Brüssow of the star-studded invitational Barbarians team, get yourself a ticket to Twickenham here. It promises to be a scrumptious display of rugger, great for fans of the game and the perfect introduction for rubgy virgins!
Please note: If you are reading this in the future and know the result of this titanic clash then A) please don’t travel back in time and ruin it for us and B) although you may have missed your chance to see this particular match, there’ll be plenty more great sporting offers on Wowcher.co.uk.