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Hansen proud of All Blacks

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Hansen proud of All Blacks' bounce-back

Steve Hansen said the Wallabies “weren’t in the same place” as a week earlier which played a role in New Zealand’s commanding 36-0 Bledisloe Cup triumph at Eden Park.

The other half of the equation was that the All Blacks responded perfectly to pressure, resulting in a 57-point swing following their 47-26 defeat in Perth.

Hansen said there are fine margins at the elite level and that both teams had shown they’ll present strongly at the World Cup in Japan if they can unearth their best form when it matters.

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“We got towelled up last week and I’m not sure that any All Black team has enjoyed that experience,” he said.

“It was easy to see we were in the house. What we couldn’t see was where Australia were. It only takes a small degree of change and maybe they weren’t in the same place they were a week ago. And you see the result.

“Both teams are very talented teams and both teams will go to the World Cup with big chances of winning it, I think.”

Hansen said Saturday’s five-try triumph was more satisfying than most because of the nature of the build up, in which his team wore criticism from all quarters.

He reserved special praise for the performance of 33-year-old skipper Kieran Read, one of several All Blacks singled out by critics as potentially past his prime.

“There’s been a lot of things said in the media and a lot of things spoken about within the team. That creates the pressure,” he said.

“We had to respond to a performance last week we would all say wasn’t good enough from our point of view and an exceptional performance from Australia.

“Seven days is a long time in sport.”

Both teams emerged relatively injury-free, with Hansen saying a shoulder knock to five-eighth Richie Mo’unga isn’t likely to be serious.

– AAP

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Hansen proud of All Blacks' bounce-back