All Blacks dominate in first Bledisloe Cup Test

The All Blacks have decimated the Wallabies in the first Bledisloe Cup test, breaking their record score against Australia with a 54-34 victory in Sydney.

New Zealand comprehensively outplayed Australia on the day, outscoring the home team eight tries to four - with six majors coming in the first half, shattering the previous All Blacks record for most points in a half against a Wallabies outfit.

The final score was also a record for the Kiwis, eclipsing their previous best scoreline from their 51-20 victory from the Auckland Bledisloe Cup Test in 2014.

Australia were the first team to trouble the scorers in the second minute of the game, as Bernard Foley knocked over a penalty goal to give Australia an early 3-0 lead - but things quickly unravelled for the men in green and gold, as the Kiwis were quick to respond through flanker Liam Squire in the 9th minute, who slipped down the left wing to score the first five-pointer of the night.

Bernard Foley added another penalty goal in the 16th minute to draw the margin back within a single point - but only a minute later and the All Blacks crossed over again, - this time through Rieko Ioane, who made easy work of Wallaby fullback Israel Folau to extend the margin to 12-6.

Ioane was over again minutes later when some sloppy handling from the Wallabies allowed him to latch onto a loose ball and race away untouched under the posts for his second try of the night, with New Zealand scoring a point-per-minute in the opening 19 minutes.

In the 24th minute, the Kiwis struck again through Ryan Crotty - who left the Australian defense in tatters with some help of Beauden Barrett, who touched the ball twice in the lead-up and was instrumental in the try.

Things went from bad to worse for Australia in the 34th minute when former Rugby League star Sonny Bill Williams made his mark on the contest, scoring his sides fifth try just before halftime.

At the major break, New Zealand led by a score of 40-6 - as Ryan Crotty scored his second try of the evening right on the stroke of half-time as he surged through a tired Wallabies line to fly in next to the posts and send shockwaves into the Wallabies camp as they headed into the sheds at the major break with an unassailable lead.

Any hope of a Wallabies second-half revival looked slim, when All Blacks fullback Damian McKenzie strolled in to score an untouched try only three minutes after play resumed in the second half - pushing the margin to 47-6 and stunning the Sydney crowd into silence in the process.

The All Black juggernaut continued to roll on, as scrum half Aaron Smith scored a soft try minutes later and break the All Blacks record score against Australia with over 30 minutes remaining in the contest - allowing New Zealand to go into cruise control for the rest of the match.

The Wallabies finally broke their try-scoring drought in the 53rd minute through debutant Curtis Rona - who was one of the few bright spots of the evening for Australia, and starting a run of 28 unanswered points for the home side with Tevita Kuridrani, Kurtley Beale and Israel Folau also claiming five-pointers in the second half.

Australia were gifted a slight reprieve on the stroke of half-time when a Beauden Barrett try on the back of a charge-down was overruled, as it was deemed that he did not ground the ball before Wallabies fly half Bernard Foley - and the margin was locked at 54-34 as the final siren sounded in the background.

New Zealand will look to carry the momentum from this game into next week, as they take on the Wallabies in the second Bledisloe Cup Test - LIVE from Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin at 5.30pm AEST on TEN.


Australia 34

Tries: Rona, Kuridrani, Beale, Folau

Cons: Foley 3

Pens: Foley 2

New Zealand 54

Tries: Ioane 2, Crotty 2, Squire, Williams, McKenzie, Smith

Cons: Barrett 7