Folau, Speight try doubles as Australia beat Fiji


Melbourne (AFP)

Israel Folau and Henry Speight scored try doubles as Australia launched their international season with a 37-14 win over Fiji in Melbourne on Saturday.

Fullback Folau was outstanding in attack, running over 150 metres for the match, and Fijian-born winger Speight finished well as the Wallabies outscored Fiji five tries to two after leading 18-0 at half-time.

Fly-half Bernard Foley kicked three conversions and two penalty goals to finish with 12 points.

The Wallabies began well and dominated the first half, but the Fijians had more success in the second half with tries to Vereniki Goneva and Timoci Nagusa.

It was a tonic for the Wallabies to win their season opener by 23 points, with Test debutant Karmichael Hunt catching the eye at inside centre along with towering lock Adam Coleman.

The Wallabies hit the ground running and were 15-0 up in the first 11 minutes.

Foley aimed a high kick to the right wing for Folau, who out-jumped fullback Kini Murimurivalu to score the opening try in the fourth minute.

The Wallabies were in again when forwards Coleman and Scott Higginbotham exchanged passes and gave the opening for Speight to score out wide.

The Wallabies went a man down when Folau was yellow-carded for a high tackle but they added three more points through a Foley penalty goal while the fullback was off the field.

Foley took off from his own quarter with an intercept off a Ben Volavola pass but was run down, before he added a further penalty for an 18-0 lead at half-time.

Fiji-born centre Tevita Kuridrani had a try disallowed when he put his foot into touch early in the second half.

But Foley put Folau through a gap on halfway and he burnt off the Fijian cover defence to score his second try and stretch the Wallabies' lead to 25-0.

Goneva scored Fiji's first try after he beat off Speight's diving tackle, before Stephen Moore came off the substitutes' bench to score a pushover try.

Winger Nagusa dived over for Fiji's second try with three minutes left. But the Wallabies kept the ball alive after the fulltime siren and were rewarded with Speight's second try after great passing from Quade Cooper and Hunt.