JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Oh, baby! Wallabies, Barnes will long remember June 16

MONDAY MAUL

The Wallabies celebrate winning the Test. Click for more photos

Wallabies snatch victory over Wales

New Zealand-born Mike Harris kicked a penalty goal after the siren to seal a two-point win over Wales. Photo: Getty Images

At midday on Saturday, an emotionally drained Berrick Barnes was holding his newborn premature baby at the Sydney Children's Hospital in Randwick. Test football was the last thing on his mind.

Ten hours later in Melbourne, Barnes was surrounded by well-wishers - so appreciative of his central role in one of Australian rugby's most important recent Test triumphs.

In between, Barnes was involved in several white-knuckle taxi rides, had a ''quick kip'' on the Sydney-Melbourne flight, weaved his way between several trams on Collins Street to get to the team meeting on time, booted through 17 points, set up the best try in the Test, started hobbling ''like a bullrider'' when his leg cramped up, missed a shot that could have lost the Wallabies the game, was announced the man of the match, and then witnessed from the sideline his replacement Mike Harris finish this most exceptional of days off by kicking the winning penalty. No one, not even master Hollywood scriptwriter William Goldman, could have conjured this.

Big day out … Berrick Barnes had no time to scratch himself.

Big day out … Berrick Barnes had no time to scratch himself. Photo: Getty Images

And even yesterday Barnes was still trying to come to terms with his Academy Award performance for a leading role in the best rugby tear-jerker seen in years.

What a momentous 24 hours. After flying back to Sydney on Friday to attend the birth of his and wife Bec's first child, who had arrived six weeks early, Barnes somehow had to compose himself, get back to Melbourne in time and then be the Wallabies playmaker against the most streetwise of opponents. He had little sleep, his emotions were in the basket-case category, he was even struggling to concentrate on the Test.

But it all came together, enabling the most gregarious of Wallabies to put down June 16, 2012, as the best day of his life. And it inspired all those around him. Rob Horne, his Waratahs teammate and the man Barnes put through for their only try, said there was high excitement when the new father arrived at the team meeting, two hours before kick-off. ''It was a great lift for us. For Berrick to get through what he did and see him so uplifted by the experience, well we fed off that. I feel lucky to be part of his special night because that's something we'll never forget,'' Horne said.

Barnes walked into the team room ''and they were all in there in a big huddle, with the headphones on and music blaring. And I came in with my civvies on. Then I got changed in the corner while Robbie [Deans] started to speak''.

But he was still concerned. ''Bec and I were under the illusion the baby was still several weeks away. Then after the captain's run on Friday, I got a call saying there was a chance we'd go tomorrow, so I rushed home again. Bec was pretty emotional about it all. It was all pretty unexpected and as a first-time mum she was worried. As I was. You don't know what to expect.''

Archie Barnes arrived around midnight, weighing 1.93 kilograms. ''A lot of guys miss their first-born baby because they're at work or at the pub. At least I wasn't one of them. It was so special to be there. I certainly had Archie in my thoughts last night even on the field. It is definitely the best buzz you can have, but you just don't realise how draining it all is … and I didn't even push the baby out.

''During the game I had to rely on the adrenalin rush to get through. I really had doubts when I was coming back to Melbourne. It was all about just not letting anyone down and I was more relieved than anything at the end of the game that I had contributed.'' Bec and Berrick Barnes certainly delivered.

45 comments so far

  • Great game Berrick and congratulations to you and Bec on the safe arrival of your son.

    Commenter
    Jackson, NSW
    Date and time
    June 18, 2012, 12:39AM
    • Grats on being a new dad Berrick ... but

      STOP KICKING THE BALL!!!

      I'm a long suffering Waratahs supported and can't deal with this anymore.

      If I wanted to see a game of forcings back I'd go to an AFL game.

      This is a joke and is why rugby is losing followers.

      What happenned to running rugby??

      Commenter
      Ricardo
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 11:01AM
  • Not only will the Wallabies remember this game, so will the Wales team and rugby fans who witnessed a great test match. Finally, we have a team that can kick goals reliably, a hooker that can throw a straight lineout ball, a pack that doesn't fold in a scrum. A team with real talent all over the paddock and a great coach, this may be one of Australia's really great teams in rugby history.

    Commenter
    Dave Allen
    Date and time
    June 18, 2012, 5:29AM
    • The ability to kick goals is a talent but the value of 3 points for a penalty is in my opinion ludicrous and only encourages more kicking to further slow the game.

      Commenter
      Hendo
      Location
      randwick
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 8:32AM
    • Hendo, that may be true. But how many tests over the years against the All Blacks have we lost because we could not match their accurate goal kickers?

      Commenter
      Dave Allen
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 9:19AM
    • Need to show some form against the best in the world before you can call this "one of Australia's really great teams in rugby history". It's still three wins and 12 losses against the All Blacks during Deans' tenure, after being pretty much even for the decade prior to that.

      Commenter
      The Claw
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 9:36AM
    • The Claw, absolutely, they can only be truly measured against the All Blacks, and, if they can win, then Robbie Deans' tenure will be vindicated. As the next world cup approaches. I'm sure his experimentation with selections has always been done with a bigger picture and long term goal in mind. The game on Saturday night was played at a very fast pace again, and handling was good. I think the All Blacks finally will face a stern test.

      Commenter
      Dave Allen
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 10:10AM
    • Dave Allen..........are you THE Dave Allen..... the comedian?
      This team is still a marshmallow and when they face off to Ab's SAf And Pumas then I will take notice
      Two minutes to go Wales did not have the nous to hold ball for a measly 2 minutes! Any S15 team would have closed that game out...........having said that the wobblies deserved to win a low quality game (two in a row........what a winning streak)

      Commenter
      heading off
      Location
      Guatavita
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 1:32PM
    • Dave this team is still a very long way from great, and just as all the Wallaby and Aussie rugby Doom Prophets need to be put back in their boxes after the odd poor performances against lower ranked opponents, so too we need to be careful about premature OTT euphoric conclusions just because a few well-earned tight results go our way.

      Yes, in the past two weeks Barnes and Genia have played with the ability we know they possess and Pocock has demonstrated that his passage from apprentice to master is probably complete (cue predictable Kiwi backlash...). But cries of greatness are still a long way off and the boys need to keep their feet on the ground.

      The current midfield is pedestrian at best. No comparison can be made with the Horans, Littles and Mortlocks of the past. Vuna is a massive defensive liability and surely a 5th choice at best among the current crop; he certainly cannot be held in the company of the Campeses, Tunes and Roffs. Upfront, Palu, Robinson and TPN can't seem to last more than 50mins at the highest level and Robinson, while a tremendous asset in the scrum, is a passenger in general play (watch him closely this week and you will see he is the last man to every breakdown, arriving just in time to lean on the back of the ruck to take another breather...) And while Kepu looked to have come of age at tighthead in the 1st test, he and Alexander were well bested by Jenkins and Jones this week...

      No, there's still plenty to work on here. Great is a long way off...

      Commenter
      Capt Footlong
      Date and time
      June 18, 2012, 10:03PM
  • Let all those who have rubbished master playmaker Barnes hang their heads in shame.

    Commenter
    mick-e
    Date and time
    June 18, 2012, 6:02AM

    More comments

    Make a comment

    You are logged in as [Logout]

    All information entered below may be published.

    Error: Please enter your screen name.

    Error: Your Screen Name must be less than 255 characters.

    Error: Your Location must be less than 255 characters.

    Error: Please enter your comment.

    Error: Your Message must be less than 300 words.

    Post to

    You need to have read and accepted the Conditions of Use.

    Thank you

    Your comment has been submitted for approval.

    Comments are moderated and are generally published if they are on-topic and not abusive.

    Related Coverage

    HuffPost Australia

    Super Rugby 2016

    Round 1
    Fri, 26 FebTimes shown AEDT
    BLU 0vs HIG 0 17:35EP
    BRU 0vs HUR 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    Sat, 27 FebTimes shown AEDT
    CHT 0vs Jagu 0 04:00FSS
    Sunw 0vs LIO 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
    CRU 0vs CHF 0 17:35AMI
    WAR 0vs RED 0 19:40AS
    FOR 0vs REB 0 21:50nib Stadium
    Sun, 28 FebTimes shown AEDT
    King 0vs SHA 0 00:00NMBS
    STO 0vs BUL 0 02:05DHL Newlands
    View All Fixtures
    Round 2
    Fri, 04 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CRU 0vs BLU 0 17:35AMI
    BRU 0vs WAR 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    Sat, 05 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHF 0vs LIO 0 15:15FMG Stadium Waikato
    HIG 0vs HUR 0 17:35FBS
    RED 0vs FOR 0 19:40SS
    Sun, 06 MarTimes shown AEDT
    BUL 0vs REB 0 00:00Loftu
    CHT 0vs STO 0 02:05FSS
    SHA 0vs Jagu 0 04:10GpKP
    View All Fixtures
    Round 3
    Fri, 11 MarTimes shown AEDT
    BLU 0vs HUR 0 17:35EP
    FOR 0vs BRU 0 22:05nib Stadium
    Sat, 12 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HIG 0vs LIO 0 17:35FBS
    REB 0vs RED 0 19:40AAMI
    Sunw 0vs CHT 0 21:50Singapore National Stadium
    Sun, 13 MarTimes shown AEDT
    King 0vs CHF 0 00:00NMBS
    STO 0vs SHA 0 02:05DHL Newlands
    View All Fixtures
    Round 4
    Fri, 18 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HUR 0vs FOR 0 17:35Central Energy Trust Arena
    WAR 0vs HIG 0 19:40AS
    Sat, 19 MarTimes shown AEDT
    BUL 0vs SHA 0 04:00Loftu
    Sunw 0vs REB 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
    CRU 0vs King 0 17:35AMI
    RED 0vs BLU 0 19:40SS
    Sun, 20 MarTimes shown AEDT
    LIO 0vs CHT 0 02:05Emirates Airlines Park
    STO 0vs BRU 0 04:10DHL Newlands
    Jagu 0vs CHF 0 09:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    View All Fixtures
    Round 5
    Fri, 25 MarTimes shown AEDT
    HUR 0vs King 0 17:35WS
    Sat, 26 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHF 0vs FOR 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
    REB 0vs HIG 0 19:40AAMI
    Sunw 0vs BUL 0 21:50Singapore National Stadium
    Sun, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
    CHT 0vs BRU 0 00:00FSS
    SHA 0vs CRU 0 02:05GpKP
    Jagu 0vs STO 0 09:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    RED 0vs WAR 0 16:05SS
    View All Fixtures
    Round 6
    Fri, 01 AprTimes shown AEDT
    HIG 0vs FOR 0 17:35FBS
    Sat, 02 AprTimes shown AEDT
    LIO 0vs CRU 0 04:00Emirates Airlines Park
    BLU 0vs Jagu 0 17:35QBE Stadium
    BRU 0vs CHF 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    Sun, 03 AprTimes shown AEDT
    King 0vs Sunw 0 02:05NMBS
    BUL 0vs CHT 0 03:10Loftu
    WAR 0vs REB 0 16:05AS
    View All Fixtures
    Round 7
    Fri, 08 AprTimes shown AEST
    CHF 0vs BLU 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
    FOR 0vs CRU 0 21:00nib Stadium
    Sat, 09 AprTimes shown AEST
    STO 0vs Sunw 0 03:00DHL Newlands
    HUR 0vs Jagu 0 17:35WS
    RED 0vs HIG 0 19:40SS
    Sun, 10 AprTimes shown AEST
    SHA 0vs LIO 0 01:05GpKP
    King 0vs BUL 0 03:10NMBS
    View All Fixtures
    Round 8
    Fri, 15 AprTimes shown AEST
    CRU 0vs Jagu 0 17:35AMI
    REB 0vs HUR 0 19:40AAMI
    Sat, 16 AprTimes shown AEST
    CHT 0vs Sunw 0 03:00FSS
    BLU 0vs SHA 0 17:35EP
    WAR 0vs BRU 0 19:40AS
    Sun, 17 AprTimes shown AEST
    BUL 0vs RED 0 01:05Loftu
    LIO 0vs STO 0 03:10Emirates Airlines Park
    View All Fixtures
    Round 9
    Fri, 22 AprTimes shown AEST
    HIG 0vs SHA 0 17:35FBS
    REB 0vs CHT 0 19:40AAMI
    Sat, 23 AprTimes shown AEST
    Sunw 0vs Jagu 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
    HUR 0vs CHF 0 17:35WS
    FOR 0vs WAR 0 19:40nib Stadium
    STO 0vs RED 0 23:00DHL Newlands
    Sun, 24 AprTimes shown AEST
    King 0vs LIO 0 01:05NMBS
    BRU 0vs CRU 0 16:05GIO Stadium
    View All Fixtures
    Round 10
    Fri, 29 AprTimes shown AEST
    CHF 0vs SHA 0 17:35Yarro
    FOR 0vs BUL 0 21:05nib Stadium
    Sat, 30 AprTimes shown AEST
    HIG 0vs BRU 0 15:15Rugby Park
    BLU 0vs REB 0 17:35EP
    RED 0vs CHT 0 19:40SS
    Sun, 01 MayTimes shown AEST
    LIO 0vs HUR 0 01:05Emirates Airlines Park
    STO 0vs WAR 0 03:10DHL Newlands
    Jagu 0vs King 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    View All Fixtures
    Round 11
    Fri, 06 MayTimes shown AEST
    CRU 0vs RED 0 17:35AMI
    BRU 0vs BUL 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    Sat, 07 MayTimes shown AEST
    Sunw 0vs FOR 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
    CHF 0vs HIG 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
    WAR 0vs CHT 0 19:40AS
    SHA 0vs HUR 0 23:00GpKP
    Sun, 08 MayTimes shown AEST
    King 0vs BLU 0 01:05NMBS
    View All Fixtures
    Round 12
    Fri, 13 MayTimes shown AEST
    HIG 0vs CRU 0 17:35FBS
    REB 0vs BRU 0 19:40AAMI
    Sat, 14 MayTimes shown AEST
    HUR 0vs RED 0 17:35WS
    WAR 0vs BUL 0 19:40AS
    Sunw 0vs STO 0 21:45Singapore National Stadium
    Sun, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
    CHT 0vs King 0 01:05FSS
    LIO 0vs BLU 0 03:10Emirates Airlines Park
    Jagu 0vs SHA 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    View All Fixtures
    Round 13
    Fri, 20 MayTimes shown AEST
    CRU 0vs WAR 0 17:35AMI
    Sat, 21 MayTimes shown AEST
    RED 0vs Sunw 0 15:05SS
    CHF 0vs REB 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
    FOR 0vs BLU 0 19:40nib Stadium
    LIO 0vs Jagu 0 23:00Emirates Airlines Park
    Sun, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
    SHA 0vs King 0 01:05GpKP
    BUL 0vs STO 0 03:10Loftu
    View All Fixtures
    Round 14
    Fri, 27 MayTimes shown AEST
    HUR 0vs HIG 0 17:35WS
    WAR 0vs CHF 0 19:40AS
    Sat, 28 MayTimes shown AEST
    King 0vs Jagu 0 03:00NMBS
    BLU 0vs CRU 0 17:35EP
    BRU 0vs Sunw 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    STO 0vs CHT 0 23:00DHL Newlands
    Sun, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
    BUL 0vs LIO 0 01:05Loftu
    REB 0vs FOR 0 16:05AAMI
    View All Fixtures
    Round 15
    Fri, 01 JulTimes shown AEST
    CHF 0vs CRU 0 17:35ANZ National Stadium, Suva
    BRU 0vs RED 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    Sat, 02 JulTimes shown AEST
    Sunw 0vs WAR 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
    HUR 0vs BLU 0 17:35WS
    REB 0vs STO 0 19:40AAMI
    CHT 0vs FOR 0 23:00FSS
    Sun, 03 JulTimes shown AEST
    LIO 0vs SHA 0 01:05Emirates Airlines Park
    King 0vs HIG 0 03:10NMBS
    Jagu 0vs BUL 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    View All Fixtures
    Round 16
    Fri, 08 JulTimes shown AEST
    BLU 0vs BRU 0 17:35EP
    RED 0vs CHF 0 19:40SS
    Sat, 09 JulTimes shown AEST
    LIO 0vs King 0 03:00Emirates Airlines Park
    CRU 0vs REB 0 17:35AMI
    WAR 0vs HUR 0 19:40AS
    FOR 0vs STO 0 21:45nib Stadium
    Sun, 10 JulTimes shown AEST
    BUL 0vs Sunw 0 01:05Loftu
    SHA 0vs CHT 0 03:10GpKP
    Jagu 0vs HIG 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    View All Fixtures
    Round 17
    Fri, 15 JulTimes shown AEST
    BLU 0vs WAR 0 17:35EP
    RED 0vs REB 0 19:40SS
    Sat, 16 JulTimes shown AEST
    SHA 0vs Sunw 0 03:00GpKP
    CRU 0vs HUR 0 15:15AMI
    HIG 0vs CHF 0 17:35FBS
    BRU 0vs FOR 0 19:40GIO Stadium
    Sun, 17 JulTimes shown AEST
    STO 0vs King 0 01:05DHL Newlands
    CHT 0vs BUL 0 03:10FSS
    Jagu 0vs LIO 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
    View All Fixtures
    Round 18
    Fri, 22 JulTimes shown AEST
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    Sat, 23 JulTimes shown AEST
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby Semi Finals
    Fri, 29 JulTimes shown AEST
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    Sat, 30 JulTimes shown AEST
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby Grand Final
    Sat, 06 AugTimes shown AEST
    TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
    View All Fixtures
    Super Rugby 2016
    Overall standings
    Team P W L D +/- Pts
    Blues 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Waratahs 0 0 0 0 0 0
    View all
    Super Rugby 2016
    Overall standings
    Team P W L D +/- Pts
    Brumbies 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Chiefs 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Crusaders 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Force 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Highlanders 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Hurricanes 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Rebels 0 0 0 0 0 0
    Reds 0 0 0 0 0 0
    View all
     

    Follow Us on Facebook

    Featured advertisers