Home / World News / New Zealand All Blacks give Australian Wallabies a reality check in Bledisloe Cup

New Zealand All Blacks give Australian Wallabies a reality check in Bledisloe Cup

All Blacks winger Caleb Clarke has burst into global rugby stardom to help New Zealand get their Bledisloe Cup defence back on track with a 27-7 win over Australia in Auckland.

After a pulsating 16-16 draw in the series opener, the talk this week was whether the Wallabies could end their 34-year losing streak at Eden Park.

They couldn’t – with a multitude of handling errors and paper-thin defence consigning the Wallabies to yet another loss at their least favourite ground.

The All Blacks, stung by the poor effort in game one, came with more venom.

Veteran hooker Dane Coles bristled with energy and the return of Beauden Barrett from injury injected penetrative pace.

But the undoubted star was Clarke, who showed Jonah Lomu-like skills and strength as he bulldozed the Wallabies the defence time and again, announcing himself as a future star in the making.

Clarke, 21, the son of former All Blacks centre Eroni Clarke, was so impressive he left the field to a standing ovation with 12 minutes remaining.

Australia’s Hunter Paisami is tackled during the Bledisloe Cup match between the New Zealand All Blacks and the Australian Wallabies at Eden Park.
Camera IconAustralia’s Hunter Paisami is tackled during the Bledisloe Cup match between the New Zealand All Blacks and the Australian Wallabies at Eden Park. Credit: Hannah Peters/Getty Images

All Blacks did a great job protecting first five Richie Mo’unga after he was ruffled last week with some borderline tackles. They used skip passes to Jack Goodhue and Barrett also stepped into first receiver role.

After a Mo’unga penalty, it was Goodhue running at first receiver in 23rd minute that led to All Blacks first try – he powered to within a metre of line and Aaron Smith scooted around base of ruck to score.

Ned Hanigan was a strong addition to Wallabies and they struck back just on the half-hour when the blindside flanker broke through an attempted tackle by Joe Moody.

Moody was left face down on the turf after being knocked out when his head smacked into Hanigan’s hip.

Hanigan burst clear to set up an easy cross for Marika Koroibete.

Australia suffered a big blow from the ensuing kickoff when Matt To’omua appeared to strain a hip flexor when making a clearing kick and he was replaced by Jordan Petaia.

Wallabies Nic White of the Wallabies confronts All Black TJ Perenara.
Camera IconWallabies Nic White of the Wallabies confronts All Black TJ Perenara. Credit: Fiona Goodall/Getty Images

Leading 10-7 at the break, New Zealand started the second half with a try- scoring blitz.

Within three minutes of the resumption Jordie Barrett crossed after Mo’uga and Goodhue combined to create an overlap against a flat-footed defence.

The game was effectively over and the future on show three minutes later when Clarke – with a mix of raw power and savvy footwork – smashed through five would-be tacklers to create the space for No 8 Ardie Savea to bust past the remnants of Australia’s broken defence.

The final two games of the series will be in Sydney on October 31 and in Brisbane on November 7.

Australia need to win both to win the Bledisloe Cup for the first time since 2003.

About brandsauthority

Check Also

Hoon drivers caught on camera at illegal burn-out competition in Malaga

Police are turning their attention to hoon drivers after an illegal burn-out competition in Malaga …

%d bloggers like this: