Following back-to-back losses, the All Blacks have responded to criticism in a big way by beating Los Pumas 38-0 in Newcastle on Saturday night.

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In their first meeting since their shock loss to the Pumas two weeks ago, the All Blacks appeared on top from the get-go, eventually crossing for the opening score through Dane Coles 13 minutes in. But other than that, they weren’t able to take complete advantage of having 74% of possession, leading by just 10-points to nil at the break.

The All Blacks came out of the sheds for the second-half showing plenty of intent though, with Number Eight Ardie Savea coming within mere metres of scoring on two occasions, before he finally crossed with his third attempted 12 minutes into the half.

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All Blacks coach Ian Foster and captain Sam Cane reflect on the All Blacks’ 38-0 win over Argentina in Newcastle.

But 17-0 was how the scores remained until up-and-comer Will Jordan was subbed on with just under 15 minutes to play. In just his second test appearance, the 22-year-old scored two runaway tries in three minutes.

He finished the night with the most metres run of any player with 125 from four carries, in a performance which well and truly turned heads on social media. Jordan had already made a name for himself in New Zealand, having starred for Tasman in last year’s Mitre 10 Cup, for the Crusaders in Super Rugby Aotearoa this year, and he came off the bench to score the winning try in the North vs South clash in August.

One fan on Twitter said that Jordan is set to be a “superstar” on the test rugby scene while another described him as “the Artful Dodger” following his cameo off the bench.

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Saturday’s test also goes to show just how much pressure and scrutiny is put on All Blacks’ every week, with many fans calling for Jordan to replace another exciting prospect in Caleb Clarke.

Clarke was compared to the late Jonah Lomu for his performance in Bledisloe II in Auckland where he ran riot before receiving a standing ovation from the crowd when he was replaced in the 68th minute.

On Saturday, the 21-year-old once again stood out for his rampaging runs, finishing with 84 run metres from a game-high 13 carries, but it still wasn’t enough to steer clear of criticism.

But Jordan will have to wait until next year to cement his spot in the black jersey, with the win being the All Blacks’ last test match of the year.

Now sitting five competition points clear at the top of the Tri Nations standings though, they’ve all but secured the title as they prepare to head back to New Zealand to begin two weeks of quarantine. The Pumas would need to beat the Wallabies by 93 points while the tournament’s hosts would have to win by 101 when they face in the competitions final round in Sydney next weekend.

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