Arguably against the run of play, it was the All Blacks who drew first blood in the against the Wallabies in Wellington. The Wallabies had plenty of ball in the opening minutes, and looked the more threatening with Harry Wilson and Filipo Daugunu creating plenty of headaches down the right side.
It was Damian McKenzie who started it too, the electric fullback who was only called into the matchday squad yesterday after Beauden Barrett was ruled out with an Achilles tendon injury.
At his dangerous best, McKenzie found space while returning a Tom Banks clearance. The fullback drew in the Wallabies defence, before laying it off to George Bridge whose quick hands let Rieko Ioane make some much-needed metres for the hosts.
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) October 11, 2020
But the Wallabies were the on the backfoot, and two phases later, the quick hands of the backline and Shannon Frizell created space out wide.
The ball went through five pairs of hands before finding Jordie Barrett on the right edge, who ran in untouched for the first test try of the year. McKenzie was once again involved, running an effective line to draw in a couple of Australian defenders.
Jack Goodhue also ran a great line behind McKenzie, which the Wallabies simply had no answers for.
Here’s how Twitter reacted to the brilliance of the All Blacks.
All Wallabies for the first 10 minutes.
And then Bosh ?? First attack ??ADVERTISEMENT
No team can play ball in hand like The All Blacks.
— Sully (@Sulsters_inc) October 11, 2020
Excellent try @AllBlacks
— Nico De Klerk (@nicodKlerk) October 11, 2020
What a belter of a try beautiful start
— robert crowley (@robcrowley2012) October 11, 2020
But the try wasn’t without controversy, with some eagle-eyed fans noticing Ioane having stepped into touch in the leadup. While stepping off his left foot, the centre stepped on the sideline.
Touch judge Angus Gardner was directly behind the centre but missed the call, with Ioane making an otherwise impressive burst. Still, fans weren’t overly impressed with the call.
Was it though? pic.twitter.com/CEZ1Nie0qu
— Predators Rugby (@RugbyPredators) October 11, 2020
Riko was out!!! What the hell
— Jason Watson (@Jason1Watson) October 11, 2020
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now