Rugby Union; Wallaby reject receives late call

Combined Scottish Districts 19 Australia 37

The rollercoaster rugby career of Tim Gavin reached a fresh high yesterday when the 32-year-old New South Wales No 8 and captain was called up by Australia for the remainder of their European tour.

Gavin, capped 45 times, replaces Mark Connors, who was added to a growing injury list during a 37-19 victory over a combined Edinburgh/Glasgow side at Anniesland. Connors snapped knee ligaments when he lost his footing during one of the rolling mauls used to establish a victory platform over a spirited combined side, among whom Test contender Kenny Logan showed signs of running into form.

Although the coach Greg Smith tried to console Connors by indicating he would have gained a debut cap at Murrayfield next week, the player was devastated. "I can't believe it. I was so close to my dream and now flight QF2 beckons." The Australians want to spare every member of the likely Test side any risk of injury when they play a Scottish Select in Perth tomorrow evening. They hope Gavin will arrive in time to play.

Gavin has a few points to prove. He was left out of the tour party despite being a member of the Wallaby side which played in the final match of the Tri-series. In the weeks leading up to the tour, Gavin was even touted as a contender for the captaincy.

He was then named one of two extra players who would have travelled had it been possible to arrange the Test against England.

The build-up to Saturday's Test against Scotland is likely to be dominated by talk of Australia's mauling, a tactic which the "combined cities" coach, Kevin Greene, claimed could only be stopped illegally. "There were times when the referee could have penalised Australia for blocking. They had guys in front of the ball carrier and the only way to defend is to give away penalties at source and hopefully not concede a seven-pointer."

Smith refused to be drawn into controversy. "It's probably best for me not to talk about laws." The injury to Connors apart, Smith was more forthcoming about the ability of his side to stay upright despite slippery underfoot conditions. Richard Harry looked useful in broken play and Warwick Waugh also posed a threat at the lineout, where he and John Welborne dominated.

Denied a similar springboard, Combined Districts had to rely heavily on the goal-kicking of Ally Donaldson to keep them in contention for more than an hour and feed off poor Australian ball retention.

Combined Scottish Districts: Try Logan. Conversion Donaldson. Penalties Donaldson 4. Australia: Tries Connors, Manu, Wilson, Knox, Campese. Conversions Knox 3. Penalties Knox 2.

COMBINED SCOTTISH DISTRICTS: D Lee (Watsonians); D Stark (Melrose), S Hastings (Watsonians, capt), A Garry (Watsonians), K Logan (Stirling County); A Donaldson (Currie), G Beveridge (Boroughmuir); A Watt (Currie), G Bulloch (West), B Stewart (Edinburgh Accies), P Jennings (Boroughmuir), A Lucking (Currie), S Reid (Boroughmuir), D McLeish (West), D Clark (Currie).

Australia: J Roff; D Campese, B Tune, D Herbert, P Howard; D Knox, G Gregan; R Harry, M Foley, A Blades, W Waugh, J Welborne, D Manu (M Caputo, 66), M Connors (T Kefu, 63), D Wilson (capt).

Referee: A Watson (Ireland).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Buttoned up: Ryan Reynolds with Helen Mirren in ‘Woman in Gold’
filmFor every box-office smash in his Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. Now he says it's time for a reboot
News
people
News
Actress Julianne Moore wins the Best Actress in a Leading Role Award for 'Still Alice' during the 87th Annual Academy Awards in Hollywood, California
people
Sport
Ross Barkley
footballPaul Scholes says it's time for the Everton playmaker to step up and seize the England No 10 shirt
News
'We will fix it': mice in the 1970s children’s programme Bagpuss
science
Life and Style
2 Karl Lagerfeld and Choupette
fashion
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Executive

£18000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Retail Buyer / Ecommerce Buyer

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Working closely with the market...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - CAD Software Solutions Sales

£20000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A reputable company, famed for ...

Ashdown Group: Client Accountant Team Manager - Reading

Negotiable: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group has been engaged by a highly resp...

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

War with Isis

Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria
Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

A spring in your step?

Scientists develop mechanical leg brace to help take a load off
Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock

Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
Ryan Reynolds interview: The actor is branching out with Nazi art-theft drama Woman in Gold

Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
Why Robin Williams safeguarded himself against a morbid trend in advertising

Stars safeguard against morbid advertising

As film-makers and advertisers make increasing posthumous use of celebrities' images, some stars are finding new ways of ensuring that they rest in peace
The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head

Hack Circus: Technology, art and learning

Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head. Rhodri Marsden meets mistress of ceremonies Leila Johnston
Sevenoaks is split over much-delayed decision on controversial grammar school annexe

Sevenoaks split over grammar school annexe

If Weald of Kent Grammar School is given the go-ahead for an annexe in leafy Sevenoaks, it will be the first selective state school to open in 50 years
10 best compact cameras

A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now

Paul Scholes column

Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now
Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

The former player on how she is finding time to coach both Manchester Thunder in the Superleague and England in this year's World Cup
General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?