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Brave Scotland almost topple All Blacks

Sonny Bill Williams on the charge

Scotland came out firing today at Murrayfield, putting together one of their best performances of recent years despite losing to the All Blacks 22-17.

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The big talking point of the first half was a call by referee Matthew Carly to not yellow card All Black winger Waisake Naholo for a tackle on Scottish fullback Stuart Hogg. Naholo clearly took Hogg out in the air, however Carly was satisfied that the winger was impeded by Ali Price in the lead up.

A penalty each was all the scoring in the first half, however it could’ve been more if either side was more accurate in their set piece. The All Blacks were gifted a 5m scrum off a Lee Jones mistake, however couldn’t make the Scots pay. The home side had their own chance off a lineout close to the All Black line, but again were let down by a forward pass.

Codie Taylor finally broke the deadlock with a try, thanks to the skill of Rieko Ioane. The two combined twice in the movement that originally started with an Aaron Smith kick, with the hooker eventually scoring in the corner.

Damian McKenzie scored shortly after off a beautiful kick through by Sonny Bill Williams. However, Scottish lock Johnny Gray powered his way over to send the crowd into a frenzy, setting up a tense last 15 minutes.

All Black discipline fell apart in the latter stages, two yellow cards to Sam Cane and Wyatt Crockett put them under undue pressure. However, Beauden Barrett managed to score a stunning set piece try while the side was down to 14 men.

Huw Jones drew the Scots up to 22-17 in the 77th minute with a beautiful try that was set up by Stuart Hogg, and then the home side desperately tried to find the winner in the dying stages.

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Hogg then made a bust into the 22, but his final pass was forward, which ended the game for a relieved All Black side.

The All Blacks now travel to Cardiff next week for their last game of the year against Wales.

 

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