10th Nov, 2002
Ref: Jonathan Kaplan
31 - 28 (17-14 half-time)
So the feeling remaining after the game... what is it exactly?
I haven't decided yet so lets talk about the comeback!
31 - 14! What kind of f*cked up score is that for the ABs to be losing by?
And without many Canterbury lads could they possibly come back? But they did and it was almost bloody marvellous!
Unfortunately the comeback lived up to recent R&B standards, close but not quite.
But what was the mood at Cone Stadium?
Was there fevered cheering with try scoring moves? There were!
Was there swearing at missed chances and useless referee decisions? there were.
Special mention to the two solo tries to Jonny Wilkinson and Danny Lee. Both were inspired, and bloody sneaky. Surely Lee learnt how to do that from an Australian.
Well the AB's have far exceeded my expectations. If I was the Poms I would be shattered after that result. Really apart from a few flashes of brilliance from Wilkinson, and some impressive speed from Cohen, the Poms looked ordinary against a far from full strength NZ. This "loss" is actually a great boost for our WC build-up next year. It also shows the enormous depth in NZ rugby. What other nation could leave 21 first choice players at home & still have a very competitive international side!? Hell Aussie have a couple of players injured & lose to Ireland!!!
Spencer & Merhts were like a tag team duo, complementing each other brilliantly. Our forwards were great. Jonah played his best game in seemingly years (funny how the Poms bring out the best in him). Both halfbacks played well.
I'm happy! Well done the AB's!!! :-)
Despite the loss, I'm feeling pretty positive about the game. There were a lot of really encouraging things to be taken from the match. The AB's came back from a disastrous start to the game. Well done Taine for keeping everyone cool. Especially the forward pack who were starting to look really shaky as the poms put the heat on the scrums. They came back really well. Hopefully Hore can put that awful last lineout throw behind him and realise he played a top 79 minutes of rugby.
It was also a real team effort. Everyone put in a big effort and not one player looked out of their depth.
I like the way Spencer creates space running the ball, in contrast to Mehrts using the pass. As DH says, they complement each other well. I was quite surprised when Mehrts came on for the second half as Spencer had a good first 40. In fact, I was a little disappointed in a way as Spencer's play was so good, but I see on Planet-Rugby that it was because of a shoulder injury that Mehrts came on.
Great going the AB's. Bring on the Frogs!
Jules wanks on
Good analysis and all but bloody hell, we still lost to the Poms!!! I know it was only our C team and this tour was always going to be a tough one, but bugger, we still lost to the Poms!
Of course if it takes a loss to the Poms to get Jonah back on track and share the wealth in terms of getting some other provinces represented in the team then I'm happy to take that.
It's the end of a very long (and successful) rugby season after all, a good summer of cricket (with Jeff Wilson leading a team of no names and old farts in the Black Caps) will dull the pain of losing to the Poms and if we can follow up with good performances against the French and Welsh then the tour will be deemed to be a success.
I'll be looking forward to reading some analysis of the game by some Northern Hemisphere commentators, they can be happy that the Poms won, but surely they can't be crowing about it.
Great game of rugby though, even with a Northern Hemisphere team involved. :)