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All Blacks repel spirited Argentina


New Zealand 21 Argentina 5

Julian Savea of the All Blacks scores a try.

Julian Savea of the All Blacks scores a try. Photo: Getty Images

The All Blacks overcame a committed Argentina and a power outage to beat the Pumas
21-5 in their Rugby Championship Test on Saturday night played in horrendous Wellington weather.


Another New Zealand performance plagued by handling errors came to life in the closing stages as they crossed through wingers Julian Savea and Cory Jane to maintain their perfect start to the four-nation tournament.

Ma'a Nonu (L) is tackled by Argentina's Julio Farias Cabello.

Ma'a Nonu (L) is tackled by Argentina's Julio Farias Cabello. Photo: Getty Images

Argentina, who drew 16-16 with South Africa two weeks ago, defended resolutely through the first three-quarters of the match but lost their way when flanker Julio Farias Cabellos was sinbinned in the 59th minute.

A patchy spectacle will be remembered most for a halftime break which lasted nearly half an hour due to a power outage which plunged Westpac Stadium into darkness.

Winds peaked at 160km/hr in Wellington which tore roofs off houses and uprooted trees and caused the power cut which plunged the stadium into darkness.

Both teams returned to their changing sheds as the floodlights took about 15 minutes to warm up following a loss of power in the port area of the city.

At that stage the hosts led just 6-5 following a first half played in strong wind and rain.

Conditions were better in the second spell but a granite-tough Pumas pack proved hard to break down although discipline often proved their undoing.

Aaron Cruden, a late replacement for Dan Carter at five-eighth, landed penalties in the ninth and 24th minutes, either side of a try to veteran Pumas prop Rodrigo Roncero.

He burrowed over after the All Blacks had recklessly tried to attack from near their own goal line.

Cruden put his side 9-5 up in the 51st minute and Argentina's hopes were dented eight minutes later when Cabello was shown a yellow card for a professional foul.

He made a tackle on Jane who had tried to pass to unmarked All Blacks outside him but French referee Romain Poite ruled the Puma had deliberately knocked the ball down.

The All Blacks exploited their advantage when centre Conrad Smith drew two defenders before offloading to Ma'a Nonu who put Savea over.

Victory was sealed with nine minutes to play when Jane was the recipient of a neat long pass by Cruden, who landed the sideline conversion to complete an 11-point haul.

It was a 13th straight Test win for the All Blacks, who remain unbeaten in 15 Tests against Argentina.

Following twin defeats of Australia last month, the world champion All Blacks now prepare for a Test against the Springboks in Dunedin next week.


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Rugby World Cup 2015

Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 35vs FJI 11 Report Stats
TGA 10vs GEO 17 Report Stats
IRE 50vs CAN 7 Report Stats
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 32vs JPN 34 Report Stats
FRA 32vs ITA 10 Report Stats
SAM 25vs USA 16 Report Stats
WAL 54vs URU 9 Report Stats
Mon, 21 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 26vs ARG 16 Report Stats
Wed, 23 SepTimes shown AEST
SCO 45vs JPN 10 Report Stats
Thu, 24 SepTimes shown AEST
AUS 28vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 38vs ROM 11 Report Stats
Fri, 25 SepTimes shown AEST
NZL 58vs NAM 14 Report Stats
Sat, 26 SepTimes shown AEST
ARG 54vs GEO 9 Report Stats
ITA 23vs CAN 18 Report Stats
Sun, 27 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 46vs SAM 6 Report Stats
ENG 25vs WAL 28 Report Stats
AUS 65vs URU 3 Report Stats
SCO 39vs USA 16 Report Stats
Mon, 28 SepTimes shown AEST
IRE 44vs ROM 10 Report Stats
Wed, 30 SepTimes shown AEST
TGA 35vs NAM 21 Report Stats
Fri, 02 OctTimes shown AEST
WAL 23vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 41vs CAN 18 Report Stats
Sat, 03 OctTimes shown AEST
NZL 43vs GEO 10 Report Stats
SAM 5vs JPN 26 Report Stats
Sun, 04 OctTimes shown AEST
SAF 34vs SCO 16 Report Stats
ENG 13vs AUS 33 Report Stats
Mon, 05 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 45vs TGA 16 Report Stats
IRE 16vs ITA 9 Report Stats
Wed, 07 OctTimes shown AEDT
CAN 15vs ROM 17 Report Stats
FJI 47vs URU 15 Report Stats
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 64vs USA 0 Report Stats
NAM 16vs GEO 17 Stats
Sat, 10 OctTimes shown AEDT
NZL 47vs TGA 9 Report Stats
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 33vs SCO 36 Report Stats
AUS 15vs WAL 6 Report Stats
ENG 60vs URU 3 Stats
ARG 64vs NAM 19 Report Stats
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 32vs ROM 22 Report Stats
FRA 9vs IRE 24 Report Stats
USA 18vs JPN 28 Report Stats
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Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 23vs WAL 19 Stats
NZL 62vs FRA 13 Report Stats
IRE 20vs ARG 43 Report Stats
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
AUS 35vs SCO 34 Stats
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 18vs NZL 20 Stats
Mon, 26 OctTimes shown AEDT
ARG 15vs AUS 29 Stats
Sat, 31 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 24vs ARG 13 Stats
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
NZL 34vs AUS 17 Stats
View All Fixtures
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Team P W L D +/- Pts
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Wales 4 3 1 0 49 13
England 4 2 2 0 58 11
Fiji 4 1 3 0 -17 5
Uruguay 4 0 4 0 -196 0
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Team P W L D +/- Pts
South Africa 4 3 1 0 120 16
Scotland 4 3 1 0 43 14
Japan 4 3 1 0 -2 12
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
New Zealand 4 4 0 0 125 19
Argentina 4 3 1 0 109 15
Georgia 4 2 2 0 -70 8
Tonga 4 1 3 0 -60 6
Namibia 4 0 4 0 -104 1
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Ireland 4 4 0 0 99 18
France 4 3 1 0 57 14
Italy 4 2 2 0 -14 10
Romania 4 1 3 0 -69 4
Canada 4 0 4 0 -73 2
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