“Bleeding” Park Reveals All Blacks’ True Worth

Apparently the English think New Zealanders can teach them a thing or two. Who knew? Of course, the thing or two is about rugby but even so. In the wake of the All Blacks’ brilliantly violent and controversial victory over South Africa at “Bleeding” Park in Auckland, the Daily Telegraph enumerated the five facts the English now know about the world’s number one ranked rugby team.

New Zealand is the smartest team in the world. No side takes its chances better. Take the first five minutes when the Springboks blew the men in black off the park. Who scored first? The All Blacks.

Dan Carter may have crocked his shoulder in the first 15 minutes but, says English sports writer Steve James, he is untouchable. This is due to the yellow card wrongly dished out to Bismarck Du Plessis for his legal tackle on the first five. The card would have remained in pocket for any other player as the English believe Carter and captain Richie McCaw get a free ride from referees.

Brain is needed as much as brawn if the English are to beat New Zealand. While the South Africans won many of the contact points and set phases, they lacked the deft intelligence the All Blacks bring to the game. Muscle upstairs is just as important.

The flaws of modern technology got an airing before the final point: how does England compare? The Red Roses were the last team to beat the All Blacks in 28 matches but, suggests James, with a test this Spring (NZ time) and a tour to New Zealand the following year, England’s true test is yet to come.

The new International Rugby Board rankings have just been released and the All Blacks have extended their lead over South Africa by 92.07 points to 88.51. New Zealand have been ranked number one in the world for 46 months.

Tags: All Blacks  Daily Telegraph (The)  England  New Zealand  Rugby  South Africa  The Springboks  

Dunedin Swimmer Erika Fairweather Wins in Doha

Dunedin Swimmer Erika Fairweather Wins in Doha

Erika Fairweather has won her maiden swimming world championship title with victory in the women’s 400m freestyle final in Doha. The 20-year-old from Dunedin is the first New Zealander to win…