2012 Wales rugby union tour of Australia
|Dates||2 June – 23 June|
In June 2012, Wales toured Australia as part of the 2012 mid-year rugby test series. They faced Australia in a series of three internationals across the eastern states, starting at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, then moving on to Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, before finishing in Sydney at the Sydney Football Stadium. In addition, they played a tour match against one of Australia's domestic clubs, the Brumbies, at Canberra Stadium.
Before flying to Australia, Wales also held a one-off match at home so that Rob Howley, the caretaker coach, could finalise the squad. This was held at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff against the Barbarians.
During this tour, Wales were attempting to regain the James Bevan Trophy they lost in 2009, when Australia beat them 33–12 in Cardiff. They had won it the previous year, 21–18. However, the last time Wales beat Australia in Australia was in 1969, when they won 19–16.
Wales lost the series 3–0, continuing their history of not having won in Australia for 43 years. However, all matches were close encounters, and they scored 61 points to Australia's 72. They also played a return match in Cardiff in the 2012 Autumn Internationals that ended in a similar narrow defeat, 14–12.
In the last three matches between the two teams, Wales led with five minutes to go and Australia snatched victory from them.
|Date and time||Venue||Home||Score||Away|
|2 June 2012, 14:00 BST (UTC+01)||Millennium Stadium, Cardiff||Wales||30–21||Barbarians|
|9 June 2012, 20:00 AEST (UTC+10)||Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane||Australia||27–19||Wales|
|12 June 2012, 19:30 AEST (UTC+10)||Canberra Stadium, Canberra||ACT Brumbies||15–25||Wales|
|16 June 2012, 20:00 AEST (UTC+10)||Etihad Stadium, Melbourne||Australia||25–23||Wales|
|23 June 2012, 15:00 AEST (UTC+10)||Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney||Australia||20–19||Wales|
Towards the end of May, the bulk of the Welsh squad left for Australia, leaving a handful of players to face the Barbarians. After Wales' win over the Barbarians, the few players who had earned their place in the squad during the game left for Australia to join up with the team. Caretaker coach Rob Howley announced a 35-man squad to take to Australia.
- Caretaker coach: Rob Howley
Note: Flags indicate national union for the club/province as defined by the International Rugby Board.
Robbie Deans announced his squad to face Wales at the beginning of June. The public already knew that James O'Connor, Kurtley Beale and usual captain James Horwill would all be out of the tour due to injury. From this, Robbie Deans was able to announce his 40-man squad. On 19 June, it was revealed that Beale would return for the third and final test against Wales.
Head coach: Robbie Deans
Wales vs Barbarians
|Try: Robinson 10' c
Hook 71' c
Brew 79' c
Con: Hook (3/3) 11', 72', 80'
Pen: Hook (3/3) 4', 25', 51'
|report||Try: Donald (2) 27' c, 59' c
Rees 36' c
Con: Donald (3/3) 28', 37', 60'
- The Welsh Rugby Union announced that this would be a fully capped match. As a result, Martyn Williams became the third Welsh player to reach 100 caps when he came off the bench. It was also announced that this match would see the last international appearances for Martyn Williams and Wales top try-scorer Shane Williams.
- Four players made their full international debuts for Wales: Rhodri Jones, Harry Robinson, Liam Williams and Adam Warren.
ACT Brumbies vs Wales
|Pen: Holmes (5/6) 10', 38', 56', 62', 66'
||Report||Try: Hook 19' c
Tipuric 31' c
A.W. Jones 40' m
Con: Hook (2/3) 20', 32'
Pen: Hook (2/2) 69', 76'
|Try: Higginbotham 14' c
Genia 40' c
McCabe 66' c
Con: Barnes (3/3) 15', 42', 67'
Pen: Barnes (1/3) 8'
Drop: Barnes (1/1) 49'
|Report||Try: Cuthbert 57' c
Con: Halfpenny (1/1) 59'
Pen: Halfpenny (4/4) 21', 45', 55', 62'
- Cooper Vuna made his full international debut for Australia.
- Ashley Beck made his full international debut for Wales.
|Try: Horne 38' c
Con: Barnes (1/1) 39'
Pen: Barnes (5/6) 19', 29', 47', 58', 64'
Harris (1/1) 80'
|Report||Try: North 4' c
Davies 43' c
Con: Halfpenny (2/2) 3', 44'
Pen: Halfpenny (3/3) 49', 60', 66'
|Try: Horne 64' m
Con: Barnes (0/1)
Pen: Barnes (5/5) 3', 9', 16', 38', 74'
|Report||Try: R. Jones 60' c
Con: Halfpenny (1/1) 61'
Pen: Halfpenny (4/5) 7', 13', 24', 70'
- The Wales squad is the same team that came within two points in the second test. The only change was Ken Owens replacing Richard Hibbard, who left for personal reasons.
- Kurtley Beale returned to the fullback position after injury.
- 2012 mid-year rugby test series
- 2012 France rugby union tour of Argentina
- 2012 Scotland rugby union tour of Australasia
- 2012 Ireland rugby union tour of New Zealand
- 2012 England rugby union tour of South Africa
- Gillespie, Graeme (8 May 2012). "Williams Set to Reach 100 Caps". Welsh Rugby Union. Retrieved 11 May 2012.