ROBBIE DEANS knows All Blacks rugby as well as anyone and the Wallabies coach is certain Wales have provided the best possible preparation for winning back the Bledisloe Cup.
Deans paid the Six Nations champions the ultimate compliment, describing them as All Black-like.
Australia face New Zealand in back-to-back weeks to start the Rugby Championship from August 18, as they fight to end a decade of trans-Tasman misery.
Deans says the Wallabies 3-0 clean-sweep of the tenacious Welsh, which included two nail-biting finishes in game’s two and three, will stand them in good stead for the enormous battle to come.
“We couldn’t have had a better opponent I don’t think to prepare us for what’s coming,” said Deans.
“Because the Welsh play 80 minutes, they look to attack when they sniff an opportunity, turnover ball from their own goal line doesn’t concern them and that’s classically New Zealand.
“They’re the two key traits that New Zealanders possess and they’re probably the two key traits we have to master in order to get home.”
Australia haven’t won the Bledisloe since 2002 and following last year’s loss in the World Cup semi-final to the eventual champions, their Eden Park drought against the All Blacks now extends back 26 years.
Deans said the expanded Rugby Championship incorporating Argentina made things tougher, but he’s happy with the groundwork set against Wales.
Australia appeared headed for defeat in Melbourne and Sydney, but showed composure to work towards match-winning opportunities at the death.
“It’s going to be the toughest Rugby Championship ever I think. It just goes up, year to year the ante just keeps going up,” Deans said.
“We know each other (New Zealand) very well, we play each other a lot, we’ve been playing each other four times per annum since 2008.
“We’re capable of it. But so are they.”