New Zealand walloped Australia 40-14 in a one-sided Bledisloe Cup clash and put one hand on the 2022 Rugby Championship trophy at Eden Park in Auckland.
New Zealand scored five tries to two to claim the crucial bonus point against Australia to all but retain The Rugby Championship title.
Barring an Argentina meltdown in South Africa, the Rugby Championship will stay in the Land of the Long White Cloud for another year.
The Springboks will need to beat Los Pumas by 40 points in Durban to win the Rugby Championship. It is highly unlikely, although possible.
The Kiwis increased their unbeaten streak at Eden Park to 48 Test matches since a 1994 defeat to France.
The Aussies had not won at the famous old ground since 1986 – or across the Tasman since 2001 – and after this display, a win is no closer.
Rugby Championship and Bledisloe Cup Video Highlights: New Zealand versus Australia at Eden Park, Auckland
Australia conceded 19 turnovers to eight and missed 26 tackles to New Zealand’s seven in a pathetic performance to finish off their campaign.
The visitors spent seven and a half minutes inside the opposition’s 22 and only scored twice, once when the final hooter had sounded.
Contrast this with the home team, who scored almost all their points from just over five minutes inside the Aussie’s 22.
New Zealand’s set-piece was immense, especially their driving maul, which accounted for four of the five scores.
Richie Mo’unga kicked three penalties and two conversions for 13 points to go back to the top of the points scorers charts. Mo’unga is now six points ahead of Emiliano Boffelli, who is still to play.
Codie Taylor and Samisoni Taukei’aho both found their way over the whitewash thanks to the maul. The forwards also won a penalty try from the set piece as the Aussie pack faltered.
Will Jordan and Sam Whitelock also registered five-pointers as the Kiwis bagged the vital bonus point victory.
Folau Fainga’a and Jordan Petaia crossed for the profligate visitors.
The long wait continues for the dishevelled Wallabies outfit, who were routed in the City of Sails.
New Zealand took a commanding 17-0 lead after scoring twice in four minutes before the half-hour to take control of the Test.
Mo’unga opened the scoring with a penalty before Jordan and a penalty try saw the defending champions shoot out to an unassailable lead.
Australia had their chances, but could not take any of them as the Kiwis kept the visitors scoreless in the opening half.
Two yellow cards did not help the Wallabies despite playing some of their best rugby with a man in the bin.
Australia had three yellow cards in last week’s Bledisloe Cup contest, which proved costly, and it did so again.
New Zealand put the game away when a bizarre TMO call awarded Whitelock a 43rd-minute try when the skipper clearly lost possession of the ball in the act of grounding.
Mo’unga converted and knocked over a second penalty to push the score to 27-0 seven minutes after halftime.
Taylor grabbed his 16th Test try when he flopped over after 54 minutes.
Fainga’a put the tourists on the board at the hour mark to reduce the humiliation, but Taukei’aho came on for Taylor to register another try for the hooker’s club.
Mo’unga extended the lead but Petaia crashed through Ardie Savea to score under the posts to end the game.
Reece Hodge converted to give the Springboks a slim chance of glory.
New Zealand wins the trans-Tasman Test in the first half as Australia draws a blank.
Possession was even at 50% each, but the Wallabies had 60% territory and almost five minutes inside the All Blacks’ 22 (4:52).
Ian Foster’s side, however, only spent two minutes and 20 seconds inside the visitor’s 22. The Kiwis came away with 17 points, while the Wallabies scored zero.
Australia’s poor discipline continued with Jed Holloway and David Porecki both spending time on the naughty step in the first stanza.
The rucks and mauls were also even (43 each), but New Zealand’s five linebreaks to one, made the difference on the scoreboard.
Each side conceded eight penalties, although the Kiwis had only strayed twice as they went up three scores, and the penalties cost nothing.
The Wallabies, on the other hand, could not take advantage and they got punished.
Dave Rennie’s side also turned the ball over nine times to two, which is criminal in Bledisloe Cup rugby.
Rennie’s men conceded seven penalties to two inside 22 minutes, but only trailed 3-0 despite having Holloway sent to the sin bin in the second minute.
Holloway went off for a dangerous tip-tackle on Dalton Papali’i, but the tourists hung on with 14.
The home team struck again when Jordan finished off a patient attack following the restart.
The 24-year-old took Beauden Barrett’s pass and ran around Petaia before cutting inside Jake Gordon to score his 21st Test try in 21 Tests. Mo’unga converted to make it 10-0 after 25 minutes.
Moments later, the Wallabies took down a driving maul and conceded a penalty try. Porecki went to the bin for pulling down the set piece.
Marika Koroibete should have dotted down next to the corner flag, but the winger’s foot was in touch before he scored.
It was a slack – and costly – finish, to say the least by the lacklustre Koroibete.
New Zealand put the Bledisloe Cup clash to bed, and wrap up another Rugby Championship soon after the restart.
Foster’s charges came out firing. The hosts scored two tries in 11 minutes to seal the deal.
Whitelock scored soon after the break before Taylor crashed over from another bulldozing driving maul.
The 33-year-old’s try was dubious, to say the least after another worrying bit of officiating by a TMO.
The All Blacks stand-in skipper lost the ball as he tried to dot down under the poles. Ben Whitehouse, however, decided – despite clear TV evidence – that the captain scored the try.
The replay showed that Whitelock lost the ball. Angus Bell had possession and dotted down after making the tackle.
Yet the try was awarded, the first “own try” in the game’s history because the officials deemed Whitelock was always in possession despite it being joint.
Because Whitelock had the ball before Bell, Whitehouse awarded the try because there was “no clear evidence” the lock lost control of the ball. Strange call to say the least.
Mo’unga added the extras before hitting a second goal. Taylor flopped over the try line to make it 32-0.
Fainga’a, the Brumbies’ try machine, took advantage of Mo’unga’s charged down kick, to score his sixth Test try. Foley added the extras.
Rennie needed more of the same, instead, it was only the same from Foster’s men.
Another driving maul saw Taukei’aho crash over for his eighth Test try. Mo’unga hit the post, but the lead was 30 with less than 13 minutes remaining.
The 28-year-old first-five knocked over a late penalty to increase his side’s points difference to 46 over South Africa.
But there was a late score after the hooter when Petaia went through a gap to score under the posts.
Hodge converted, which means the Boks need to win with a forty-burger later in the day to take the trophy back to the Republic.
Final Score: New Zealand 40 (17) and Australia 14 (0)
Tries – Jordan, Penalty try, Whitelock, Taylor, Taukei’aho
Pen – Mo’unga (3)
Con – Mo’unga (2)
Tries – Fainga’a, Petaia
Con – Foley, Hodge
Cards – Holloway (Yellow, 3′), Porecki (Yellow, 28′)
Referee: Andrew Brace [IRE]
Assistant Ref 1: Matthieu Raynal [FRA]
Assistant Ref 2: Pierre Brousset [FRA]
TMO: Ben Whitehouse [WAL]
15 Beauden Barrett, 14 Will Jordan, 13 Rieko Ioane, 12 Jordie Barrett, 11 Caleb Clarke, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Ardie Savea, 7 Dalton Papali’i, 6 Akira Ioane, 5 Samuel Whitelock (captain), 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Tyrel Lomax, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Ethan de Groot
Replacements: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Ofa Tu’ungafasi, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Hoskins Sotutu, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, 23 Sevu Reece
15 Andrew Kellaway, 14 Tom Wright, 13 Len Ikitau, 12 Lalakai Foketi, 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Jake Gordon, 8 Harry Wilson, 7 Pete Samu, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Cadeyrn Neville, 4 Jed Holloway, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 David Porecki, 1 James Slipper (captain)
Replacements: 16 Folau Fainga’a, 17 Angus Bell, 18 Pone Fa’amausili, 19 Nick Frost, 20 Fraser McReight, 21 Nic White, 22 Reece Hodge, 23 Jordan Petaia