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Brisbane loss spurs All Blacks


Duncan Johnstone

Motivated … Piri Weepu, standing, leads the All Blacks in the haka last weekend.

Motivated … Piri Weepu, standing, leads the All Blacks in the haka last weekend. Photo: Reuters

THE All Blacks are itching to stamp their champion status on the Wallabies in Brisbane next weekend.

Having backed up their World Cup success with an unbeaten run through the Rugby Championship and widened their gap at the top of the world rankings, the All Blacks appear to be in a class of their own.

That's a tribute to the way Steve Hansen and his new-look coaching team have managed to motivate the side to new levels.

They have succeeded in motivating from within their group a desire to not just maintain but improve standards, and that will be a driving force next weekend in Australia where they chase win No. 17.

The last time they lost was indeed in Brisbane in their final Test before the World Cup campaign. That will be a spur to this playing group, many of whom experienced that 25-20 defeat.

But they are equally moved to try to better what they have shown against the Wallabies this year with a 27-19 win in Sydney followed by a 22-0 victory at Eden Park to retain the Bledisloe Cup.

Dismiss any talk of this being a dead rubber. The All Blacks assistant coach, Ian Foster, said the team killed that theory last week when they buried the Boks in South Africa with the Rugby Championship title wrapped up.

"I think we showed in the Soweto game how much it means to this team just to perform on the day and to put our best foot forward," Foster said yesterday.

"This Bledisloe Cup game is the same equation. There will be some people say that we have already won it and maybe we can loosen up a wee bit but the reality is we just want to keep performing.''

With a northern tour looming with Tests against Scotland, Italy, Wales and England, the All Blacks want to get the business done down under first against a Wallabies team that has shown character if not class in recent weeks.

They ground out a victory in Argentina last week but will be buoyed to be back in Brisbane. Foster is sure the Australians won't be lacking motivation either.

"Historically, the Aussies have played very well in Brisbane. The last time the All Blacks lost was there and history is full of times that the Australians have seemingly been down and out and they've shown a massive amount of character and played really well against us under that sort of pressure,'' he said.

With no major injuries, Foster indicated a "steady as you go" approach to selection. There may be some tinkering but a foundation of their success this year has been built around minimal changes to the starting XV and cleverly integrating the new, young talent and maintaining freshness in key areas.

Foster said there was no reason why the All Blacks can't get even better. That was about looking at themselves and also trying to second-guess opponents.

"You have to focus on keeping improving things. It's about celebrating the successes and the things that are going good. But it's also making sure we keep the microscope on our game to figure out how could we improve it, what little things could we do a bit differently, but also what would our next opposition do to stop what they have just seen?

"There are a lot of very good people tossing ideas into the melting pot in this group."

HuffPost Australia

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
View All Fixtures
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
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 4 4 0 0 106 17
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
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
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
Samoa 4 1 3 0 -55 6
USA 4 0 4 0 -106 0
View all
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
View all
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
View all

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