The All Blacks are fully aware they need to maintain or better the level they got to against the Irish – which was spectacular at times as they ran in seven tries.
“That’s one of the key things about sport isn’t it; being able to repeat and repeat and repeat,” All Blacks coach Steve Hansen said.
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“It’s probably the hardest thing to do in sport. But one of the hardest things we’ve striven to do as a group is to be better than we were the day before. We don’t always achieve that but if you strive to do it you give yourself an opportunity.
“We know that if we aren’t better we aren’t going to get what we want so it’s pretty simple.
“They’re playing good footy so they’ll be confident, as we will be. We’re playing well ourselves and we just have to make sure as a coaching group and management group where the players can express themselves on Saturday. That’s the task.”
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) October 26, 2019
Hansen said he felt England’s first-half defensive effort served to demoralise the Wallabies, who had to chase the game and became increasingly reckless as a result.
“I watched the first half of it and Australia hammered and hammered and got no success. When you get no success you get frustrated. Obviously we can’t afford to get frustrated against them. If we’re not having success we’ve just got to keep building the momentum and pressure until we do. Both sides are defending really well. It is going to be a big clash.”
Match details: Saturday October 26, 9:00pm (NZT), International Stadium, Yokohama City
Referee: Nigel Owens
All Blacks: Beauden Barrett, Sevu Reece, Jack Goodhue, Anton Lienert-Brown, George Bridge, Richie Mo’unga, Aaron Smith, Kieran Read, Ardie Savea, Scott Barrett, Sam Whitelock, Brodie Retallick, Nepo Laulala, Codie Taylor, Joe Moody.
England: Elliot Daly, Anthony Watson, Manu Tuilagi, Owen Farrell, Jonny May, George Ford, Ben Youngs, Billy Vunipola, Sam Underhill, Tom Curry, Courtney Lawes, Maro Itoje, Kyle Sinckler, Jamie George, Mako Vunipola.
Head-to-head: New Zealand and England have played 41 times, with the All Blacks winning 33 and the English 7, with one draw.
Last five encounters
• 2018 – All Blacks 16 England 15
• 2014 – All Blacks 24 England 21
• 2014 – All Blacks 36 England 13
• 2014 – All Blacks 28 England 27
• 2014 – All Blacks 20 England 15
At the RWC
• 1999 – All Blacks 30 England 16 – Pool Play
• 1995 – All Blacks 45 England 29 – Semi-final
• 1991 – All Blacks 18 England 12 – Pool play
Rugby World Cup sandwich survey with All Blacks legend Justin Marshall:
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