All Blacks covering all bases

Getty Images

Lynn McConnell     09 Sep 2016     Getty Images

Blindside flanker Jerome Kaino said the strength of the All Blacks was based around doing their basics right and it was the same for Argentina, although their basics were slightly different and were seen in their off-loading and their ability to chip kick and recover.


That meant the All Blacks had to prepare for all eventualities when playing them.

Kaino said with the game the All Blacks were trying to play they didn't put too much focus on the number on their backs.

"You do find a lot of guys with lower numbers out in the open and we try and back ourselves with the skill sets that we train so that when we get caught out there we have the skill set to be able to operate, and under pressure. When we play at pace hopefully we operate better than the opposition," he said.

Kaino said having to fill in at lock occasionally later in games, as happened in the second Test against Australia, gave him a greater appreciation of the sort of effort the front five put in on a regular basis and it took time to get used to the changed role.

But Argentina offered a lot of differences in their loose forward game.

"Their back three are big threats for us carrying off the scrum and they are quite quick so having the balance between putting a lot of energy into the scrum but then being able to adapt, and get off, and nullify those threats, it is going to have to be a good balancing act at the weekend," he said.

Hooker Dane Coles said that while there was an enjoyment factor in playing a running type of game with interplay with the backs there was a realisation that the set piece work would be required more this week.

There was always attention paid to the set piece, but it would be moreso this week, he said. That was because the way the Argentinians drove, the scrum was a big part of their game.

"We knew as soon as we came in on Sunday that that was going to get massive attention so we've been working hard to match that because if you give these guys dominance at scrum time and their drive they've got some world-class backs who've got some great off-loads.

"We know what's coming and we're preparing accordingly and we really need to front up. Probably against Aussie the scrum wasn't too flash but we didn't adapt as quickly as we could so we need to make sure we're on from the start to help our backs out," he said.