OITA – It took nearly 78 minutes and a Herculean effort on Australia's goal-line for Uruguay to score a try in their 45-10 defeat on Saturday but the late five-pointer was more triumph than consolation for the thrilled South Americans.
Camped in the Wallabies' 22 for much of the last 10 minutes, Uruguay was repelled repeatedly by desperate defending but number eight Manuel Diana finally burrowed under a ruck to sneak the ball over and trigger a huge roar from the sympathetic crowd at Oita Stadium.
The lion-hearted effort put some gloss on a torrid afternoon for Uruguay but for their coach Esteban Meneses, it was evidence the developing rugby nation was closing the gap on the giants.
"Of course, the younger players have developed in Uruguay rugby and there is a better potential to make corrections," Meneses told reporters through a translator.
"There were younger players who came in (to the team) and also players from the first row ... So being able to score a try from a maul or a scrum is showing the potential that Uruguay has in terms of achieving evolution.