Australia coach Michael Cheika believes his side must make a significant improvement they are to test defending champions New Zealand in the Rugby World Cup final. The Wallabies edged past Argentina 29-15 at Twickenham but a big improvement is needed if they are to tackle the world number one ranked All Blacks.
Cheika's side again benefitted from a series of refereeing decisions, this time from official Wayne Barnes who sin-binned Pumas lock Tomas Lavanini in the first half before awarding Adam Ashley-Cooper's third try despite a forward-looking pass from Drew Mitchell in the build-up. Having become one of only three teams to beat Steve Hansen's side since they won the World Cup in 2011 in August, Australia know what it takes to beat New Zealand. But Cheika says "something special" is required to even compete with their illustrious opponents.
"They're obviously the world number one and they're there for a reason," he explained. "We have only beaten them once in the last tweleve so they will be feeling pretty good that they've got our measure so it is going to be up to us to do something special and do something extra to just be competitive.
"We have to improve massively from what we did against Argentina to even be in the hunt next week and that is why we try and train those small things. Every game at this level is so hard and when you've got team like New Zealand have with many threats, they're a very well drilled side and very well organised. They know what they are doing all the time on the field in all situations. You have to be working all the time and believe in your own way of playing.
"New Zealand have had a very different path to us and obviously they will be feeling little bit differently in their preparation. We believe in ourselves to go out there and do our absolute best. I want to work out how we can play the best we possibly can and put it out there and see what happens from there."