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All Blacks in a class of their own - critics

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    29 Aug 2016     Getty Images

Veteran writer Peter Jackson continued: "Steve Hansen's untouchables will have left the rest of an admiring world wrestling with an ominous question last night, one that cannot be ducked much longer.

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"It has never had to be asked before but it does now: have the All Blacks become too good for the game?"

"…Even from this distance, perhaps only England will offer a genuine threat to their monopoly of the World Cup.

"The facts confirm that the holders are not so much in a class of their own but on a different planet surrounded by a more sophisticated solar system.

"New Zealand have such rich seams of untapped talent that what would be considered a crisis anywhere else is viewed as an opportunity. [Anton] Lienert-Brown responded by playing a blinder."

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"Such is the dominance of the men in black at the moment that Australia produced so little – bar one break by Will Genia in the game – and were never challenged, not even close, despite a promise by Michael Cheika to be more physical and clinical after their drubbing at home in Sydney last week.

"With a lenient ref in Romaine Poite, the All Blacks never took a step back and although they weren't as clinical as in Sydney, not as accurate as they have been in the past few years, still had way too much in the tank for the Wallabies to ever trouble them."

Sydney Morning Herald:

"I don't foresee the Wallabies' set piece suffering the way it has over the past two weeks for the rest of the Rugby Championship, simply because no other side has a Kieran Read or Sam Whitelock to cause havoc. The All Blacks' defensive work at the lineout has reached peak Victor Matfield levels of disruption."

The Daily Telegraph (Sydney):

"It wasn't a 34-point thrashing this time. It was only a 20-point thrashing. That is the little consolation the Wallabies can take away from a 14th consecutive Bledisloe Cup series defeat in which they were comprehensively outgunned in every department…Worryingly, the gap between the two nations seems as far apart as it's ever been."

The Sunday Telegraph (London):

"How good were All Blacks?" They were absolutely magnificent. That they were not quite as good as last weekend probably goes without saying, simply because they were playing rugby from a different planet then, but they still plays some sublime stuff in retaining the Bledisloe Cup, scoring four tries and being so ruthlessly efficient at taking the opportunities when they arose."