World Cup benefits for the Wallabies if they end their 13-year Bledisloe Cup drought on Saturday are enormous.
But skipper Stephen Moore says they can’t afford to even think about such things.
Having entered the year on a losing streak and ranked world No.6, Michael Cheika’s men will be set start next month’s World Cup unbeaten in 2015 and with a massive confidence boost if they again overcome the odds against world champions New Zealand.
Not only will they have won the Rugby Championship and Bledisloe Cup, but they will already have achieved the toughest single assignment in world rugby – beating the All Blacks at their spiritual home, Eden Park, where Australia hasn’t won since 1986.
Not to mention the boost it would give to a code in Australia that has struggled alongside the AFL and NRL in recent years.
Moore appreciates the hype surrounding Saturday’s blockbuster following the 27-19 win over the Kiwis in Sydney, but reckons it’s crucial for his side to shut it out.
“There’s obviously a lot positivity around the win on the weekend and we want our supporters … people on the street to be happy about it,” said Moore on Wednesday.
“That’s a real positive for the game in Australia, but that can’t cross over into our thinking when we prepare for that next match and that’s a key point.
“We haven’t achieved anything yet, so we are not looking at any of that stuff, we just want to get the week right and get the performance right.”
Moore admitted the side had done a good job getting on with business so far in their build-up, thanks largely to coach Michael Cheika.
“It’s not hard with Cheiks reminding us all the time about the importance of just improving each day and training really hard and that’s been our focus this week,” he said.
Despite the Sydney win, bookmakers don’t give the Wallabies much chance with the Australians at a generous $4 to win and the All Blacks at $1.25.
Cheika is expected to make some tweaks to his starting side with Matt Toomua in the frame for a start at five eighth after Bernard Foley’s indifferent effort last week.
Foley’s halves partner Nick Phipps is also under pressure from replacement halfback Nic White, who won the Sydney game with a try and a long-range penalty goal in a sensational cameo.
The energetic Phipps has made good impact off the bench previously for Cheika and Saturday could be a good chance for White to see how he goes over longer minutes, while there could also be an opportunity for winger Henry Speight to make his return.
Other changes, if any, would likely be on the bench with the likes of Wycliff Palu available.