PLAYER RATINGS: Northern conquerors
OPINION: The All Blacks closed out their year in Cardiff with an entertaining 33-18 win over Wales.
RugbyPass rates the New Zealand players!
15 Damian McKenzie:
Another good shift by DMac, with some good kicking. if he’d held onto a Naholo flick pass in the first half he would’ve scored one of the best tries of the year.
14 Waisake Naholo:
A man in good form, another two well taken tries. One of the better performers on the end of year tour.
13 Ryan Crotty:
Was looking pretty good till he got hurt, too early on to rate though.
12. Sonny Bill Williams:
Great on defence and used in a more direct role this week.
11 Rieko Ioane:
What more can you say about this guy? Again he showed why he’s considered the best winger in the world right now with two tries and a set up to ALB.
10 Beauden Barrett:
What was that about goal kicking? As well as slotting sideline conversions, Barrett marshalled the troops well before shifting to fullback for the last stage of the game.
9 Aaron Smith:
Was busy as usual, and is making a habit of linking directly with Naholo – this time twice for tries.
8 Luke Whitelock:
Did what he was there to do, before getting replaced early in the second half.
7 Sam Cane:
The All Blacks’ best. Tackled anything in a red jersey, often with brutal effect. This performance will definitely cement him as the number one openside fo next season.
6 Liam Squire:
Quiet game from the big man, who should be good for a decent linebreak every test match.
5 Sam Whitelock:
Made the right calls as skipper, and took the punishment for repeated infringements himself. Will enjoy the offseason rest, by the looks of things.
4 Patrick Tuipulotu:
Did his set piece role well but curiously hooked early on.
3 Nepo Laulala:
Pinged a couple of times at the ruck and hooked at halftime, which isn’t a good sign.
2 Codie Taylor:
Got embarrassed by Josh Navidi, but otherwise had a solid game – especially at set piece.
1 Kane Hames:
Not quite the dominant force he was last week, but part of a hard-working scrum effort.
16 Nathan Harris (On for Taylor, 72nd min):
Not enough time to be rates.
17 Wyatt Crockett (On for Hames, 60th min):
Again came close to getting in penalty trouble but held up a seven-man scrum in the late stages.
18 Ofa Tu’ungafasi (On for Laulala, 40th min):
Not great at all, added little after replacing Laulala.
19 Scott Barrett (On for Whitelock, 46th min):
Had a decent run in the second half and got stuck in.
20 Matt Todd (On for Tuipulotu, 46th min):
Saved a try by tackling Faletau, which is notable because he had a hard act to follow replacing Cane.
21 TJ Perenara (On for Smith, 64th min) :
Did what he was there to do.
22 Lima Sopoaga (On for Naholo, 71st min):
Back to his role as relief first five while Barrett moves to fullback, some nice touches.
23 Anton Lienert-Brown (On for Crotty. 19th min:
Very good game from a guy who needed it. Was fortunate to get such a long spell on the field and made it count with a good try.