Bernard Foley's shock referee reveal after Wallabies 'disgrace'

·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
Wallabies five-eighth Bernard Foley aregues with referee Mathieu Raynal.
Wallabies five-eighth Bernard Foley says he is still gobsmacked to have been penalised for time wasting in the dying stages of the loss to the All Blacks. Pictures: Getty Images

After a night of sleep, Bernard Foley is still at a loss over the Wallabies' controversial 39-37 loss to the All Blacks that all but ruined Australia's Bledisloe Cup hopes.

Foley admitted he was still 'bewildered' by referee Mathieu Raynal's decision to penalise him for time-wasting after the Wallabies had won a penalty with just over one minute to play and the All-Blacks in desperate need for a score.

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Score they did after a scrum from close range, with the All Blacks swinging it to fullback Jordie Barrett for an 81st minute winner to shatter the hearts of Wallabies fans.

Wallabies coach Dave Rennie said he'd never seen such a decision at any level of the game.

Speaking with media on Friday morning, Foley said he was still coming to terms with the final moments of the game.

The Wallabies must now win the series against the All Blacks to regain the Bledisloe Cup for the first time in 20 years.

“There’s still a bit of unknown, just trying to digest the whole situation,” Foley said.

“There was a bit of confusion just in terms of personnel on the field, Just trying to get a call, it was pretty loud in the stadium.

“My conversation was he told me to hurry up but the time was off, so he didn’t really mention there was going to be any further action, then starting the clock again.”

Rennie said Foley was shattered by what unfolded after he had helped the Wallabies close an 18-point deficit in the second half.

He said that Foley thought the clock was off, so there was no urgency to play on.

"He's a bit bewildered and shocked by the decision," Rennie said.

"Obviously, he's had a great performance and he feels like he's let people down, he's gutted."

It took the gloss off a impressive return to Test rugby by Foley after a three-year absence.

The 33-year-old had a shaky start as the Wallabies trailed 12-0 early but lived up to his ice-man nickname as the pressure was turned up.

His goal-kicking was first rate with four conversions and two penalties while he found holes in the All Blacks defence, setting up two tries for fullback Andrew Kellaway.

Wallabies hearts broken after controversial loss to All Blacks

The teams were locked at 10-10 at halftime after a hectic half that saw the All Blacks lose three players, including skipper Sam Cane to injury, while the Wallabies were forced to play with 13 men after both Darcy Swain and Tom Wright were yellow-carded at the same time.

Swain was sent to the sidelines in the 36th minute for an ugly tackle on the leg of Quinn Tupaea, with the reserve back assisted from the field with a suspected ACL injury.

Wright was given his card for a professional foul trying to stop a break by All Blacks winger Caleb Clarke.

The home side got off to the worst possible start with a series of errors leaving them down 10-0 after 12 minutes, including a try by barnstorming hooker Samisoni Taukei'aho.

The Wallabies look on during their Test against New Zealand.
The Wallabies were devastated after a late penalty led to a match-winner from the All Blacks. (Photo by Kelly Defina/Getty Images)

It looked like the Wallabies were on the scoreboard in the 20th minute but Kellaway missed grounding the ball for his first try by centimetres.

Valetini made no mistake five minutes later when he barrelled over the line with Foley converting for a 10-10 scoreline.

Early in the second half New Zealand took advantage of another Wallabies yellow card with Richie Mo'unga and Will Jordan both crossing to push the lead out to 31-13.

But Kellaway got his side back in the game with two tries while Samu touched down in the 73rd minute, with Foley adding the extras from the sideline to send the match into a thrilling finale.

The loss means the Wallabies also crashed of the race for the Rugby Championship with New Zealand remaining on top.

With AAP

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