All Blacks relishing Jo'burg showdown

Date published: September 29 2013

In the wake of their victory in Argentina, the All Blacks are looking forward to the Rugby Championship finale against the Springboks.

In the wake of their bonus-point win in Argentina, All Blacks coach Steve Hansen said his side were looking forward to Saturday's Rugby Championship finale against South Africa at Ellis Park.

With the teams separated by five points, the Springboks would need to score four tries and deny New Zealand a losing bonus point to claim the title by virtue of superior points differential.

And the All Blacks are licking their lips at the prospect of an open in Johannesburg.

“They are going to have to play some rugby to get four tries. That will suit us as much as it will suit them,” said Hansen after his side victory in La Plata.

“Our guys are looking forward to it, they're already started talking about it so I don't think there will be any problem getting them up,” he said.

The All Blacks had to work hard for their bonus point having only led 11-9 at the interval.

“It was nothing more than we expected,” said Hansen.

“They are a side that is getting better all the time. They're very, very good up front and they tried to play a bit of rugby today and played it quite well so we had to work for it, and the bonus point right at the end was exactly that, a bonus for us.

“We were a lot clearer with what we wanted to do in the second half, we kicked a lot better, got a lot more urgent … and as a result of that we started going forward.”

All Blacks skipper Kieran Read admitted that it “was a very tough game.”

“They came out firing and kept the crowd in it throughout that first half,” he said.

“We probably just weren't there but full credit to the way the Argentineans came at us. It's going to be a big match next week. We've got to recover well. It's a long flight tomorrow but we've got to take the positives out of tonight. I thought that early part of the second half was great from our point of view, so we'll build on that for next week.”

Pumas captain Juan Fernandez Lobbe lamented his teams lapses in discipline.

“They put a lot of pressure on us. We lost our discipline a little bit and that's why they're the best,” said Fernandez Lobbe.

“We're going to throw everything into this last game of the Rugby Championship,” he said looking ahead to Saturday's clash with Australia in Rosario.