All Blacks aim to counter England's rush defence in second Test

h 00160338

Assistant coach Jason Holland said England's intensity around the ball and its defence had been full-on, making it challenging for the All Blacks to gain momentum.

"We've identified some key areas that will get momentum in our game. We took some big steps forwards in some areas. We dealt with England's kicking game well in the air, but there are some key bits that we think we can grow."

He said in Dunedin, they would have liked more momentum from the lineouts and scrums. Getting over the advantage line in the first phases would help get that momentum.

"We've looked at areas where we put ourselves under pressure, where we either ran when it wasn't on to run or we kicked when it wasn't on to kick. We're working hard to make sure we're making good decisions around our kicking and running game."

Holland said fullback Stephen Perofeta performed well.

"He's got awesome feet. Teams kick long to him at their peril. He set off a couple of our attacks quite nicely with runs from the back."

Perofeta, Damian McKenzie and Beauden Barrett, when he came on, worked well to ensure the All Blacks controlled the game.

England looked to put pressure on New Zealand's time, space and skills.

"If you get things wrong, if you haven't got your little things around your skills right, or your depth right, then you can get hurt.

"We've got a couple of ideas around making sure that it's hard to bring line speed, as you have to go backwards to come forward.

"There's got to be balance in what we do; we can't be predictable.

"If you do get around it, you're opening up some big holes because they find they're flying up so quickly that if you get away from them, you're opening up these massive places in a wide channel again.

"But, if you start throwing big wide balls over, they're good at recovering, as you saw at the weekend with our wings having to chop back in once we threw out to them."

Holland confirmed that TJ Perenara would not play in the Test, and Noah Hotham has been added to the squad as a backup. That puts Cortez Ratima in line for a Test debut off the bench.

"We've seen Cortez in Super Rugby, and he's been awesome, but he realises it is a step up and he's been diligent in making sure he's over everything."


View all