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'Most entertaining game I've seen': Genia on Bledisloe 1

By Ned Lester
Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Despite the night being marred by controversy, ex Wallaby half back Will Genia has declared the years first Bledisloe test the ‘most entertaining game’ in recent memory.


A penalty in the 79th minute has had the world’s rugby community in an uproar, an unfortunate distraction from a test that was another classic addition to one of rugby’s oldest rivalries according to Genia.

Aotearoa Rugby Pod host Ross Karl looked to take a break from the test’s controversies to discuss what the other 79 minutes were like for spectators.

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He asked the podcast’s special guest Genia for his thoughts on the match:

“I honestly think it’s the most entertaining game I’ve seen,” Genia said. “2000 obviously is the classic, that’s the benchmark but I was 12 years old then so I would say since then it’s absolutely the most (entertaining).

“Because 31-13 down, the All Blacks had played some really good rugby up until that point and then for us to not only stay in the fight but go up levels and actually play some really good rugby, some really, really good attacking football, it was just such a great contest.

“Even with all the controversy around the refereeing decision and things like that, just the way it finished, as a spectator, as someone who was watching the game, my heart was like, coming through my chest.


“It was just such an amazing and enthralling battle and such great entertainment.”

Ex Blues hooker James Parsons is a panelist on the podcast and agreed with Genia.

“I was the same,” Parsons said. “I couldn’t even sleep afterwards, I was so hyped from what was happening and sort of in disbelief that the adrenaline was pumping so much that I just couldn’t settle down, took me until about two o’clock to just cool the jets and get to sleep.

“I agree, It’s the best test match, best game of rugby I’ve watched in a long time.”



The panelists had previously discussed the time-wasting call, specifically noting how the first half of the game took 58 minutes to be played.

Parsons was adamant that the excitement of the match overwhelmed any awareness of the prolonged non-playing time.

“I know we mentioned the 58 minutes but it didn’t feel like 58 minutes.

“That first half to me, there was just so much going on, there was yellow cards, there was TMO’s, there was quality footy being played, from go to whoa it was a special test match.”

Ex Crusader Bryn Hall is Parsons’ co-panelist on the podcast, he also shared his thoughts on the contest.

“To be honest, when it was 31-13 when Will Jordan scores that try, I thought the game was done and dusted,” Hall admitted.

“I thought the All Blacks would power on after that but to their credit, they played some really good attacking rugby, the Australians.

“Bernard Foley taking it to the line, being able to set Kellaway up for his first try, and then obviously Pete Samu, man, what a performance that he had. I thought Pete Samu was one of the best on the paddock on the weekend.”

“You’d just have to feel gutted for the Australians because they did so well to get back into that game.

“It was a great display of heat and a bit of care in that Australian jersey, you’d probably say in the past, past Bledisloe campaigns they (the All Blacks) would have just ran away with that game.”


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