Scotland beat Australia for the first time in 28 years after Wallabies flyhalf Matt Giteau missed an injury-time conversion in Edinburgh.
Australia wasted two try-scoring chances before Ryan Cross went over in injury time on Saturday. That left Giteau with the chance to win the game, but the flyhalf, who kicked a first-half penalty, sent his conversion attempt wide and Scotland won, 9-8.
“The error rate was something that really hurt us,” the Australia captain, Rocky Elsom, said. “If I was going to give a crucial kick to anyone, it would be Matt. He’s our kicker and he’s the best we’ve got.”
Phil Godman of Scotland kicked two penalties and Chris Paterson landed a drop goal in a game where the Scottish defense was outstanding and the Australians were punished for mistakes.
“I’ve said to the team that is the most courageous performance I’ve ever been involved in,” said the Scotland coach, Andy Robinson, who used to be in charge of England.
“The amount of ball that we gave Australia to play with throughout the game and the courage that the players had to get up and keep knocking them over” was exceptional, he said. We needed a bit of luck. I thought the guys worked hard to establish that luck.”
There seemed no sign of the surprise result when a lineout infringement handed Australia a lead in the fifth minute and Giteau kicked the penalty, but Australia did not score again until Cross’s try.