All Blacks Complete Sweep of Australia in Japan
World champions New Zealand crushed old foes Australia 37-20 at Nissan Stadium in Yokohama, Japan, where the 2019 Rugby World Cup final will be held, to complete a 3-0 Bledisloe Cup series whitewash win, AFP reports.
Fly-half Beauden Barrett scored 17 points and was five-from-six with the boot as the All Blacks piled more pressure on the struggling Wallabies and under-fire coach Michael Cheika.
Barrett dived over for the pick of New Zealand’s five tries just before the hour mark to cap a dazzling individual performance.
The Wallabies, meanwhile, slumped to a ninth defeat in their last 12 Tests after being dominated in all departments.
Liam Squire, Kieran Read, Ben Smith and Rieko Ioane also touched down for the rampant All Blacks, who came into the Japan Test having won nine of the last 10 matches against their trans-Tasman rivals.
Barrett and Bernard Foley traded penalties at the start of the second half before Barrett exchanged lightning-quick passes with Ioane to race clear for New Zealand’s third try.
“It was a good start,” said New Zealand head coach Steve Hansen, whose team faces Japan at Tokyo’s Ajinomoto Stadium this Saturday.
“Australia played differently from what we are going to be playing in the next couple of weeks, but they are a formidable opponent and on their day they can play very well. It was important that we started the tour with a good performance and we did that today,” Hansen said.
“This is not only going to be the stadium for the [World Cup] final, it’s also going to be the stadium for our first game, so that’s the only thing that’s guaranteed for us. We’re really looking forward to it.”
Original article by AFP, The Japan Times, October 27, 2018.