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Sun-Herald

SIDELINE EYE

Author: TONY MEGAHEY
Date: 11/06/1988
Words: 448
          Publication: Sun Herald
Section: Sport
Page: 69
PETER STERLING pleaded for "10 more minutes" but they couldn't treat his injured left shoulder because somebody had locked the medical room.

"Where's the ... key," somebody roared as Wally Lewis called the players into a circle to confront the biggest Australian crisis since the loss to New Zealand last year.

At half-time, little Peter was out of the match and Australia looked out of it too as managers, trainers and medics rushed around trying to find the key.

Francis Desplas from France had whistled 18 penalties in the first half.

After the break they dropped off dramatically - as if somebody had had a quiet word in his ear.

Nobody understood the flood of penalties and cautions that at the 40 minute mark had all but destroyed the Test match.

Desplas was part of a "sweetheart" deal for France to keep their interest because they had pulled out of the world series.

But the Poms had played under him before and Kevin Ward and Andy Gregory were doing a masterly job in the scrums.

Great Britain looked like the stuff Winston Churchill speeches were made of.

Ellery Hanley sold Peter Jackson a dummy and then sent little Peter crashing onto his left shoulder and out of the game before the "Black Pearl"easily beat Bob Lindner to the corner.

Ward screwed the scrums like a master, Andy Gregory harassed and used the shepherd and Australia couldn't get enough ball.

The questions were being asked about the Australian team as Desplas still whistled up a storm.

Sam Backo couldn't hold the ball and he and Phil Daley were getting a bath in the scrums and in the art of front row play by Ward.

Out in the backs, hardly a sniff of leather for O'Connor and Jackson.

But as Desplas' whistle faded, so the Poms.

"He didn't get it down," protested Hanley and he was right.

But Desplas awarded Backo the try that kept Big Sam in the Green and Gold for another Test.

Then Australia had the momentum.

Britain looked tired as Fatty Vautin ripped through Hanley and Platt before Jackson scored.

Tragedy to see Vautin replaced uninjured.

Don Furner shouldn't have done it.

 
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