The Roar
The Roar


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Joined October 2018









This a good summary on Saturdays game. The All Blacks meant business and the expected backlash came. Personally I wasn’t expecting a dominant display like that but it was much needed.

I think attitude is the key word here for sure.

All Black attitude and waning Wallaby resilience

That was the best All Black display since they beat South Africa 57-0. They were a lot more clinical on Saturday than previous tests and had a clear game plan. The low kicking game in behind the Australian line and they also attacked the short side a lot especially out to George Bridges wing. This with a better scrum and a stronger physical presence laid a good foundation for the win. All players contributed and played their part. The Mo’unga/Barrett combination showed that it will be effective. Aaron Smith had one of his best games an All Black. Kieran Read has led by example in these 2 Bledisloe matches. His combination with Savea and Cane also showed why this trio can be effective going forward. The performances of Bridge, Reece and Laulala have probably given the selectors more headaches.

For the Wallabies they missed a great opportunity here. Failed to adapt to different conditions and will be wondering where their scrum went wrong. I agree that they have improved and dry conditions in Japan will suit them. However, for an increased boost in Australia they need to win on Saturday to get the Bledisloe. For as long as they struggle to win at Eden Park, I am sure NZ Rugbys match schedulers will continue to put them there.

The Wrap: Normal order restored in Bledisloe Cup whitewash

Yeah true but they would have had a slightly better frame of mind knowing they had points on the board.

Eight talking points from Bledisloe 2

That is a good analogy. I do agree with Mo’unga and Barrett playing as much as possible. My only concern in a game against Tonga could be a risk especially with the Tongan physicality. Maybe best to have one or the other out there.

All Blacks starting XV player ratings

Some reasonably good ratings and a lot fairer than some you see in some NZ publications. I think Whitelock made a game high number of tackles so did some of the dirty work. A 6 would be fair for him though as he did give away consecutive penalties.

All in all it was a great team performance where the majority of the team contributed.

I do wonder what frame of mind the selectors will be in for the game against Tonga. The World Cup Squad would be announced by then. Do they continue the good momentum with the team that played last night with an odd tinker for players who need rest and some who need more game time. We haven’t seen any selection cohesion so far this year and I believe this is a good chance to start settling on a first choice line up. Most players will be fresh as it is 3 weeks away.

All Blacks starting XV player ratings

I think Whitelock was one of the leading players for tackles made.

All Blacks starting XV player ratings

That was a massive and much needed turn around by the All Blacks. I knew we would see a much improved performance from previous games but did not expect them to click that well. Some very clever selections with Bridge, Reece and Laulala all stepping up when replacing so called first choice All Blacks. The keys for me were:

1. The ability of the All Blacks to attack down the tram lines early on down the left hand side of the field.

2. The much improved scrum. To get dominance with only 7 players was outstanding.

3. The physicality by Tuipolotu, Savea, Cane and Read really set the tone on defence and also at the break down.

4. Mo’unga and Smith controlled the game as a 9/10 combination. This allowed the likes of Lienert-Brown, Bridge and Reece to play with the space to open the Wallabies up.

Bledi hell! Wallabies walloped by brilliant All Blacks

What a difference a week makes. Australia missed a golden opportunity. The All Blacks were always going to lift but was not expecting it to be of that magnitude. For me a couple of things let the Wallabies down:

1. They got exposed down their right hand side tram lines. That’s where Smith, Mo’unga, Savea and Bridge had a field day.
2. Their scrum was demolished. To lose the ball on your own feed against 7 players is criminal.
3. High ball frailties. The good teams with accurate kicking expose this and capitalise just like the All Blacks did.
4. The All Blacks won the collision with their physicality.
5. I also wonder if Leliafano had landed those penalties, they would have gone into halftime with some hope they were still in the game.

Eight talking points from Bledisloe 2

How odd does it feel to hear that Australia are going to Eden Park with some swagger? And to be honest rightfully so. They should have the belief that can replicate a similar performances with roughly the same team. I hate to say it but this is the least confident I have been in the All Blacks in recent times. I really hope they can some how bounce back. They will need to have more possession, make more first up tackles and keep their heads and not give away silly penalties. A better foundation at both set piece and in general play from the forwards as well. I think this will be Bledisloe classic.

Wallabies well poised to double down on All Blacks

I think all 3 will be in the squad but they are definitely on notice now. The one I would be concern about is Franks. As much as he does his core roles exceptionally well, his general play is not existent and he is struggling to keep pace.

As Kane said Savea was rusty and ended up being a start at the tournament. On the other hand Reece or Bridge both have the potential to be similar to Nehe Milner-Skudder in 2015.

The Rugby Championship non-championship week: Bledis-GO!

With Ben Smith, Ioane and Franks being dropped it is something like 210 combined caps missing. However something had to be done. Ioane has looked rusty. Ben Smith as much as he has tried in all the tests is not quite delivering his high standards. I probably would have just dropped one of the wingers though. Laulala is a good scrummager and could be a boost and his general play is more efficient than Franks.

Hopefully the season campaigners mixed with some new blood (Bridge and Reece) can spark the All Blacks up again.

All Blacks mull high-stakes selection jam

Good to see an article focused on the best position on a rugby field. There is a lot of locks who are key in the international stage which you highlighted. I wished I had the height and athleticism of some of the big men we see. Always a joy to watch a good lock put in a dominant performance.

Did the Wallabies pick the All Blacks lock?

I am looking for New Zealand to be more effective on defence and disciplined. A better showing from the forwards in both set piece and general play. As well as hopefully having more to play with this week. On attack better handling with the off loads (maybe hard if it is wet) but they need to back their skills. Also hope they use their natural instincts a lot more when they have time and space to launch attacks. This team is under immense pressure and this a good opportunity to simulate a RWC knockout game as there is a lot historical records at stake on Saturday.

South Africa are building nicely and should be too good for Argentina. If the game is a day time game that may allow the crafty Argentine backs to play some rugby but dont think they will have the good foundation upfront.

Tips: New Zealand just buy 5-6 points. South Africa by 22.

The Rugby Championship non-championship week: Bledis-GO!

I thought only one of Ioane or Smith would have been dropped, not both. I am glad George Bridge is starting. He is good under the high ball and Ben Smith has been found out there lately. I agree with the Franks exclusion. General play he has looked off the pace. I just hope that there is more consistency in selection now and less changes to build some cohesion. Have this game and the game against Tonga to get back on track.

The Rugby Championship non-championship week: Bledis-GO!

We sure are interested. This is the Wallabies best time to pounce. Can they replicate the same type of performance as Perth? Can the All Blacks bounce back. The answer to both is yes.

The Wallabies were free of running and really exposed some slow All Blacks and managed to play at a really high tempo. If they can do this again they are definitely a chance.

The All Blacks traditionally bounce back after a big loss. They are going to have to gel and be a lot more clinical than we have seen so far. Their match day 23 will be interesting. I think Tuipolotu will play and SBW will play. Other tweaks maybe to get George Bridge a start. I would keep Coles starting. From the way Coles sounded after the game he will want redemption

Bledisloe 2 - now we're interested

Thanks Nick. That would be a special day when England rolled the All Blacks. I remember Chris Ashton and Manu Tuilagi having blinders. Was a hard watch for us New Zealanders at 3am in the morning.

White was integral on Saturday and helped encouraged the Wallabies to play at such a high tempo. He be brimming with confidence this week knowing he can play at that high standard. I also thought the way the Australian forwards carried the ball was superb and their work in general play really was too much for the All Blacks.

How did you think Salakai-Loto went? Seemed to be much improved.

All Blacks only see the red in a Wallabies bolt from the blue

I have to say I wouldn’t have the same confidence if the game was played elsewhere. I really think the All Blacks are ripe for the picking at the moment due to the lack of selection cohesion. History shows the All Blacks enjoy play the Wallabies at Eden Park and there will hopefully be backlash of sorts. I know they dont want to be the first team to surrender the Bledisloe after holding it for so long or be the best team to lose to them at Eden Park since 1986. All streaks have to come to an end at some stage though and this is as good as anytime.

What we know after the Wallabies' stunning Bledisloe 1 win

Schedule a test match in Auckland, it generally rains all day and comes right by kick off.

What we know after the Wallabies' stunning Bledisloe 1 win

Thanks Brett.

I was really impressed with what O’Connor offered in the midfield. That was a really smart selection. That is the first time I have seen him play since returning Australia and was well impressed.

The Wallabies tight five was really impressive. Good set piece and exceptional in general play. If they get that go forward regularly that really allows the high tempo play that Australia used on Saturday to be effective.

The All Blacks can bounce back but on the evidence I have seen it is going to need to be a HUGE turnaround. They are capable and being at Eden Park helps. I hope whoever they pick on Saturday is preserved with for the Tonga game and leading into the World Cup. The selection consistency is needed to allow this team to gel.

A few have commented on the weather not being the best on Saturday. One thing I have always noticed at Eden Park test matches is it can rain all day and clear up before kick off.

What we know after the Wallabies' stunning Bledisloe 1 win

I was going to ask about Madagascar as have heard Rugby is there national sport. Thanks for another informative read. Keep up the good work.

The world's most rugby-mad nation - by players per capita

I agree with your point on a direct playing 12. Nonu had that plus his good footwork, ball playing skills and slight kicking game. I like Lienert-Brown as he is a good all-round football but isnt as powerful on the crash ball.

The Wrap: Resurgent Wallabies place one hand on the Bledisloe Cup

Australia were deserving winners. They played at a high tempo which caught some of the older All Blacks out and could not handle the speed. Even if there was 15 vs 15, I think Australia were doing enough. Nic White and James O’Connor were inspired selections. I was really impressed with the go forward the Australian forwards provided in general play. I think this result is extremely good for rugby in Australia and I really do hope the public are behind them for this week (I am a New Zealander by the way).

Can Australia win at Eden Park? Based on what I saw on Saturday, Yes. The All Blacks generally turn themselves around quickly and playing at a ground where they have a strong record will be a boost. I am concerned with the lack of cohesion of the All Blacks which they are struggling to find due to various experimenting in certain positions and the lack of mobility of some forwards. It was pleasing to see Read in thick of everything.

Next Saturday should be a cracker.

The Wrap: Resurgent Wallabies place one hand on the Bledisloe Cup

Didn’t realise it was Hansen’s 100th in charge. That will be some extra motivation. The All Blacks have historically stepped up at Eden Park. Based on what the All Blacks have shown this year they have not been convincing. There is some alarming signs and some players are looking a little off pace. I hope they are priming themselves to get into form for when it matters.

Nine talking points from Wallabies vs All Blacks

That was one of the best Wallabies efforts in a long time despite the extra man advantage. They showed great intent with ball in hand and really deserved to win that game.

White and O’Connor were brilliant. Latu, Rodda and Tupou showed great mobility that the New Zealand forwards lacked. Can Australia break the Eden Park hoodoo next week? They’ll sure be confident.

Concern with All Blacks is they will be down to a 4th choice lock with Barrett going to suspended and Retallick out. As much as the Mouanga/Barrett system can work, I think Ben Smith needs to be at Fullback. I thought Lienert-Brown was good so hopefully he is persevered with. Read also had a better game which is promising.

Cannot wait for next week.

Nine talking points from Wallabies vs All Blacks

“Or maybe the ABs have peaked, are too old and slow, and Hansen has run out of ideas ?”

I have to agree. I have concerns around some of the All Black forward mobility and seem to struggle with the pace of the game. The Australian forwards were full of running. I thought Rodda, Latu and Tupou did some major damage in general play.

Nine talking points from Wallabies vs All Blacks