Tip of the Week
Racecourse : Kenilworth
Date : 22/05/2013
Tip : Race 2: (5) Nightside
Official Race pre-race comments of all Mike's Runners accompanied by race details, current betting and post race comments.
GYPSY MADONNA : Maiden Plate (F&M) - 1600m | Kenilworth, 11 May
LEGAL TRIP : Maiden Plate - 2500m | Kenilworth, 14th May
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Tammi Eastland - 06/02/2013
View articles and pictures from MBR from 1976 onwards. This week we feature "Prince puts out the competition"
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|Sensational Sunday in Auckland|
|Paul de Beyer, 17/10/2011|
New Zealand put together a complete 80 minute performance to come out 20-6 victors over two-time champions Australia at Eden Park on Sunday.
The All Blacks started the game in impervious form and kept the pressure on the Wallabies for the full 80 minutes, hardly giving their neighbours a chance to breath throughout the match. Led by the inspirational McCaw, the Kiwis thrilled their home fans with a complete performance that saw young stars Israel Dagg, Cory Jane and Aaron Cruden make their mark on New Zealand rugby.
Fullback Dagg was sensational throughout, with his jinking runs cutting the Aussie defence wide open. It was one such run that set-up Ma’a Nonu’s opening try within the first fifteen minutes, to got the 1987 champions off to the perfect start. Dagg started the move with a midfield bust before popping up on the wing several phases later and putting Nonu away with a terrific one-handed pass before being bundled into touch.
The Wallabies seemed to struggle on attack, with Quade Cooper having another poor day at the office. Their tactic of kicking onto the All Black back three proved to be a mistake as the New Zealanders plucked everything out of the air with ease. Man of the Match Jane was phenomenal, pulling off some of terrific aerial saves, while Dagg showed off his canon of a boot by returning the ball with interest on every occasion.
Cruden put in another composed, mature performance at flyhalf and will have gone a long way to alleviating some of the home-town fans’ fears over the loss of Dan Carter and Colin Slade. Cruden seldom made the wrong decisions and showed off a bit more of his natural running game with some delightful breaks. Scrumhalf Piri Weepu, now labeled Mister Fix-it, proved his worth again but struggled with the boot for much of the match.
Weepu controlled the game well, often taking responsibility for clearly the ball at ruck and scrum time. His kicking from hand was excellent but missed more than half of his kicks on goal. The Australians were unable to make the All Blacks pay for their inability to convert their early match dominance into points and would have been pleased to only be less than a converted try behind the hosts at half-time.
The second half started much the same as the first, as the New Zealanders continued their dominance across the park. From line-out to scrum they were untouchable, but it was the combination of Jermome Kaino, Kieran Reid and McCaw that would prove to be the difference in the end.
David Pocock, so influential against the Springboks the previous week, found himself shut-out almost completely and when he did managed a turn-over the All Blacks loose forwards would invariably turn it back. The back three completely dominated the collision point, working as a unit and destroying any chance of the Australians getting good, fast ball.
By the time the final whistle blew there was no doubt that the better team had triumphed and the Australians were the first to admit it. The All Blacks put together an almost perfect performance but will need to regroup quickly and prepare for the final, against France, next week.