Rugby Union: Australia pressed

Aquitaine XV. . .15

Australians. . . 30

TRIES in the closing minutes by Jason Little and Scott Bowen helped the Wallabies escape the threat of defeat in Saturday's opening match of their French Tour in Dax.

Australia, trailing 15-13 with 10 minutes to go against an Aquitaine regional side, finally won 30-15 but the score was flattering to the world champions.

Alistair Murdoch put Australia ahead in the 21st minute after the English referee, Tony Spreadbury, turned down an appeal from Aquitaine who claimed the winger had knocked on. The full-back, Marty Roebuck, converted and added two more penalties before half-time when Australia led 13-6.

Aquitaine, however, came back strongly in the second half and took the lead when stand-off, Stephane Prosper, kicked his fifth penalty of the match in the 64th minute.

A penalty from Roebuck put Australia back ahead before Little consolidated their position with a try seven minutes from time and Bowen intercepted a pass in the final seconds to score between the posts.

Aquitaine: Penalties Prosper 5. Australia: Tries Murdoch, Little, Bowen; Penalties Roebuck 3; Conversions Roebuck 3.

AQUITAINE: R Dourthe (Dax); P Hontas (Biarritz), P Lopez (Pau), C Coeurveille (Biarritz), W Techoueyres (SBUC); G Accoceberry (Begles-Bordeaux, capt), S Prosper (Mont-de-Marsan); S Simon (Merignac), A Fabre (Tyrosse), L Verge (Begles-Bordeaux), P Beraud (Dax), C Sentenac A Agueb (SBUC), C Dongieu (Bayonne), O Magne (Dax).

AUSTRALIA: M Roebuck (Eastwood); D Campese (Randwick), P Howard (University), J Little (South Sydney), A Murdoch (Gordon); P Slattery (University), S Bowen; D Crowley (South Sydney), P Kearns (Randwick, capt), M Harthill (Gordon), W Waugh (Randwick), G Morgan (South Sydney), A Dempsey (Gordon), F Filau (Western Suburbs), I Tabua (Brothers).

Referee: T Spreadbury (England).

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