Players ratings: Fifty-seven to nil

Sat, 16 Sep 2017 10:16
Large lima sopoaga celebrates 800

OPINION: The scoreline says it all. New Zealand are the No.1 team in the world for good reason and they are that much better than South Africa.

They were ruthless, clinical and skilful to the extreme.

They know how to exploit the opposition weaknesses and the Springboks represented bucketloads of those.

Jan de Koning rates the New Zealand players!

15 Damian McKenzie:
Nervous start, with early knock-on, but grew in stature as the game wore on and drove the Boks back with some massive and well-placed kicks.

14 Nehe Milner-Skudder:
Great finishing and solid defensive work. His composure in tight exchanges makes him a huge asset.

13 Ryan Crotty:
Showed his class by creating for those around him, even with limited opportunities. What was surprising was the tackles he missed.

12 Sonny Bill Williams:
Quiet first half and a bit more involved after the break. Also missed a couple of tackles.

11 Rieko Ioane:
Blistering pace and finishing ability. Showed up his opponent in brutal fashion.

10 Beauden Barrett:
His skills are something to behold and his goal-kicking was also on point.

9 Aaron Smith:
Quick reaction and great vision resulted in first try. Sublime service that create space and time for his playmakers.

8 Kieran Read (captain):
Missed more tackles than you would normally expect of him. His value is often not seen in the flash stuff. Won plenty of line-out possession.

7 Sam Cane:
The All Blacks' energiser bunny. By some distance the biggest tackle count.

6 Liam Square:
Powerful with ball in hand and a massive workrate during his stay on the field. Went off for concussion test after 26 minutes and did not return.

5 Sam Whitelock:
Did the basics well and set the tone with an early line-out steal. His tackle count was also supreme.

4 Brodie Retallick:
Overdid the physicality and was lucky not to have been carded. However, his workrate and general play is beyond reproach.

3 Nepo Laulala:
His workrate was poor, by All Black standards. Also struggled in the scrums.

2 Dane Coles:
Not just did he make a mountain tackles, but his work off the ball and support play makes his the premier hooker in the world.

1 Kane Hames:
Conceded free kick in first scrum and followed shortly afterwards by a knock-on. Then there was a penalty as Ruan Dreyer got the better of him. His midweek chirp at a journalist backfired badly, as he was yanked from the field early in the second half.


16 Codie Taylor (in for Coles, 58th min):
Great skills and a good workrate. Did not let his team down.

17 Wyatt Crockett (on for Hames, 42nd min):
Won a scrum penalty soon after coming on. Worked hard on defence.

18 Ofa Tu'ungafasi (on for Laulala, 52nd min):
Was a bit over-enthusiastic and conceded a penalty. But redeemed himself with a great try.

19 Scott Barrett (on for Squire, 26th min):
Good line-speed on defence and worked hard in general play. Huge tackle count and a great try.

20 Ardie Savea (on for Cane, 58th min):
Few opportunities with ball in hand and made a couple of tackles. The most passive of the replacements.

21 Thomas Perenara (in for Smith, 58th min):
Won a great turnover penalty just metres from his line. Did the basics well.

22 Lima Sopoaga (in for Williams, 54th min):
Perhaps not as flash as Barrett, but runs a fine show at flyhalf.

23 Anton Lienert-Brown (in fir Milner-Skudder, 54th min):
What a replacement to bring on - as good a finisher as the man he replaced.

By Jan de Koning