All Blacks complete Bledisloe clean sweep over Australia
MATCH REPORT: New Zealand clean swept the Bledisloe Cup with a commanding 38-21 victory over Australia in a fiery contest at Optus Stadium in Perth, despite copping a controversial red card.
*As it happened: Wallabies versus All Blacks
The All Blacks were dealt a huge blow in the 28th minute of Sunday’s match when fullback Jordie Barrett was given a red card for a studs-to-the-face incident on Wallabies wing Marika Koroibete.
Barrett had leapt to catch a high kick and thrust out his right leg as he was coming down to the turf in order to protect himself.
His studs crashed into the face of Koroibete, who slumped to the turf in pain.
Trailing 13-0 at the time, the Wallabies needed to make the most of the numerical advantage they would have for the next 20 minutes while Barrett was off the field.
Instead it was the All Blacks who pounced, with a powerful rolling maul allowing inside centre David Havili to cross just seconds before half-time.
The Wallabies didn’t score their first points until a 50th-minute try to hooker Folau Fainga’a.
Despite being without stars Sam Whitelock, Aaron Smith and Richie Mo’unga due to paternity leave, the All Blacks ran in six tries to three to secure the win in front of 52,724 fans at Optus Stadium.
The Wallabies conceded another two intercept tries – following on from the three they gave up across the opening two Tests of the Bledisloe Cup series in Auckland.
Australia will now lick their wounds before fronting up to world champions South Africa on the Gold Coast next Sunday as their Rugby Championship campaign continues.
The All Blacks kicked two penalties to open proceedings on Sunday, and Beauden Barrett set up the first try in the 17th minute with a perfectly-weighted grubber kick that sliced open the Wallabies’ defence.
Winger Will Jordan pounced on the bouncing ball, and two sharp offloads later Jordie Barrett crossed unopposed.
The Wallabies looked set to finally put some points on the board in the 28th minute when they were awarded a penalty just 22m out and almost directly in front.
But flyhalf Noah Lolesio missed the easy shot, bringing back memories of his horror kicking display in the Bledisloe Cup opener.
The red card to Jordie Barrett gave the Wallabies hope, and Koroibete thought he had a try when he scrambled over from a rolling maul.
But it was deemed Koroibete had made a double movement in reaching for the line.
It was a cruel blow for the star winger, who had also had a try ruled out in the opening minutes of the match after inside centre Samu Kerevi had picked up the ball from an offside position.
The Wallabies were unable to score any points during the 20 minutes New Zealand were down to 14 men.
But just moments after the All Blacks were back to their full complement, a smart break from scrumhalf Tate McDermott set up the home side’s opener in the 50th minute.
With the margin back to 11 points there was hope of an upset, but it was quickly snuffed out by All Blacks flanker Akira Ioane, who broke three tackles in a powerful run before offloading to Will Jordan for an easy try.
Then came the intercept tries.
A wayward pass from lock Matt Philip was picked off by David Havili, who ran 80m with Kerevi in hot pursuit to touch down.
The other intercept try came in the 72nd minute, when reserve scrumhalf TJ Perenara picked off a pass and made an important burst before unleashing a cross-field kick for George Bridge to cross.
Man of the match: Rieko Ioane and Brodie Retallick were in fine form for the All Blacks. While Wallabies captain Michael Hooper put in another massive shift, Tate McDermott is another player who stood out for Australia. However, our nod goes to All Blacks flank Akira Ioane, who was an absolute beast on the park. He made solid tackles and was just as impressive on attack.
Moment of the match: When Rieko Ioane chased down Australia’s Tom Banks inside the All Blacks’ five-metre.
Villain of the match: No real villains, just Wallabies’ handling errors inside the All Blacks’ 22
Tries: Fainga’a, White, Banks
Cons: Lolesio, Hodge 2
For New Zealand:
Tries: J Barrett, Havili 2, Jordan, Lienert-Brown, Bridge
Con: B Barrett
Pens: B Barrett 2
Red card: Jordie Barrett (New Zealand, 27 – Dangerous play and direct contact to the head)
Australia: 15 Tom Banks, 14 Andrew Kellaway, 13 Len Ikitau, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Noah Lolesio, 9 Tate McDermott, 8 Rob Valetini, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Lachie Swinton, 5 Matt Philip, 4 Darcy Swain, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Fainga’a, 1 James Slipper.
Replacements: 16 Lachlan Lonergan, 17 Angus Bell, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Izack Rodda, 20 Pete Samu, 21 Nic White, 22 Reece Hodge, 23 Jordan Petaia
All Blacks: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Will Jordan, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 David Havili, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Ardie Savea (captain), 7 Dalton Papalii, 6 Akira Ioane, 5 Scott Barrett, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 George Bower.
Replacements: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Karl Tu’inukuafe, 18 Angus Ta’avao, 19 Tupou Vaa’i, 20 Ethan Blackadder, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Damian McKenzie, 23 George Bridge.
Referee: Damon Murphy (Australia)
Assistant referees: Jordan way (Australia), Graham Cooper (Australia)
TMO: Brett Cronan (Australia)