But while it seemed as though Mowen's men had got their ambitious Grand Slam tour off to a flying start in the opening 40 minutes of their five Test trip - they face Italy, Ireland and Scotland before tackling Wales at the Millennium Stadium on 30 November - they had problems at the scrum and succumbed to a two try burst after the break.
Wales' coach Warren Gatland will no doubt have noted that England's scrum won four penalties in the opening exchanges, although the tourists' pack made amends by stealing a number of England line-outs to relieve pressure.
England skipper Chris Robshaw led the home revival in the second half, following up to flop on a charged down kick to score the first try and then Farrell sliced through for the second try. The introduction of Ben Youngs made a huge difference to England after the break, but the home side were unable to build on their 14 point burst in the final 20 minutes.
Cooper missed a long range penalty and the impressive Israel Folau almost broke through, but with no more points in the second half the Wallabies fell to their eighth defeat of the year.
England 20 (Chris Robshaw, Own Farrell tries; Farrell 2 conversions, 2 penalties)
Wallabies 13 (Matt Toomua try; Quade Cooper conversion, 2 penalties)