The All Blacks expect the Wallabies to be highly motivated when they face each other in their Bledisloe Cup Test in Auckland on Saturday.
Having previously been denied the world record for consecutive Test victories by a tier one nation, New Zealand had learned that this Test against Australia was not just another game.
All Blacks captain Kieran Read said when there was something on the line the opposition raised their game and the All Blacks would have to raise theirs.
“We know there’s a little bit extra [in the game] and that’s extra for both teams,” he told the All Blacks’ official website.
“It’s not just our record, it’s Australia’s record to try and stop us from making it so that’s going to put a bit of extra spice on it.
So far as the potential world record for consecutive wins was concerned, it had been good for the side’s mental point of view that they had acknowledged what was at stake.
“Australia certainly know what is at stake as well and I’m sure they’ll come in here with as much attitude to try and knock us off,” added Read.
“It’s got to be our preparation, our work, that’s going to win this game on Saturday night, it’s not going to be us just thinking it is going to happen.
“The work’s been done. I’m sure we’re going to be all fired up to come tomorrow night and get into it.”
While the 18 wins had not been done by a tier one nation before, the All Blacks still had to prepare like all the other games in which they had been successful.
“The boys are excited, we’re up for this challenge, it’s going to be a massive game and I’m really looking forward to it,” said the number eight.
“I think our preparation has been great. I guess from our point of view it was recovery coming back from our trip. There’s no bigger game for us playing at Eden Park against the Aussies so we know it’s going to be a massive game.”