All Black skill beat Wallaby niggle

Sat, 27 Aug 2016 13:42

REACTION: All Blacks coach Steve Hansen his team's greater skill is what managed to overcome a spiteful Wallaby team.

The 29-9 victory extended New Zealand's tenure of the Bledisloe Cup to 14 years and left them with maximum Rugby Championship points from the two games.

"They threw everything at us, as we knew they would, and there was a bit of niggle," Hansen said in his post-media briefing.

"We just had to make sure we didn't get caught up in it and kept our frustration tolerance high and just tried to play rugby.

"We scored some nice tries and felt our way through that and regathered ourselves at half-time and just continued.

"I think we really dominated that second half," he added.

"On the scoreboard it looks like we've done it pretty easy, but I don't think anyone would say it was easy out there," Hansen said.

"The skill level of our guys was really good, under extreme pressure at times, and at the moment that's probably where we've got a little bit of an edge.

"But I don't want to sit here and bag Australia, they're one of our best friends.

"You had to expect something was coming after last week [when] nothing came," he said of the Kiwis' 42-8 mauling of the Aussies in the opening round.

"They've copped a fair bit of criticism back home and they're proud people so they were going to come and bring whatever they had to bring and they did that and it was just a good old, hard game of footy," said Hansen.

"It was just a matter of us making sure that we kept our focus where we needed to be, which was playing our game.

"At times we drifted off and you'd expect that, this is a young side, we've lost 818 caps [since last year] so it's the type of game that'll make this team grow even better.

"They've been through it now and they know what it feels like and they know that if they concentrate on what we have to do, then we'll come out the other side of it okay. So there'll be a bit of trust and self-belief to come from it as well, so ideal game for us."


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