RUGBY UNION: Australia has come oh so close to staging an upset of Women's Rugby World Cup host Ireland in their opening pool match, going down 19-17 in a thriller to open the tournament.
It was the first time Ireland had defeated Australia in an international, but it will be the Aussies who will be proud to come away having only gone down by two.
The Wallaroos were playing just the sixth Test match since the last World Cup in 2014, all of those having been played in the past nine months. Two players were on debut and nine changes were made from the side that last played, against Canada in the Four Nations in June.
"To be honest, we probably left a few too many points out there tonight, especially in the first 15 minutes when we were able to build some pressure - we should have got a few more points," captain Shannon Parry (pictured) said.
"I think we can take a lot out of it, our structures and our plays were a lot better than they have been and what they were in the Quad Series.
"We'll take a lot of pride in our defence as well. There's plenty of things to work on in terms of set piece and being able to use our electric backline. The more the forwards can set the platform the more time and space we can give our backs."
Parry was a standout for Australia, always putting pressure on the Irish breakdown and having involvement in the Wallaroos' first two tries.
Australia takes on France in their second pool match on Monday at 4.45am (AEST).
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.