All Blacks give Wallabies more pain - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

All Blacks give Wallabies more pain

By Darren Walton 01/11/2008 10:34:13 PM Comments (0)

New Zealand have heaped more pain on Australia with another gritty comeback win over the Wallabies in the historic Bledisloe Cup Test at Hong Kong Stadium.

Aided in no small way by some generous refereeing from Irishman Alan Lewis - who did his best to spoil the spectacle for the near-sellout crowd of 39,682 - the All Blacks rallied from 14-9 down at halftime to post a hard-earned 19-14 victory.

Lewis hammered Australia, at one point awarding New Zealand 11 penalties to two - including seven in a row in the first half - and sharp-shooting Dan Carter took full advantage to slot three penalty goals which ultimately proved the difference between the two sides.

The Wallabies were gallant in defeat, playing some brilliant expansive rugby, particularly before the break, despite the humid and wet conditions which greeted the first-ever Bledisloe Cup clash contested outside of Australasia.

Alas, a superb tryscoring double from winger Drew Mitchell and some outstanding individual displays, most notably from five-eighth Matt Giteau, back-rowers George Smith and Richard Brown and hooker Stephen Moore, were not enough to see the Wallabies home.

After recovering from 17-7 down to clinch the Bledisloe Cup, as well as the Tri Nations trophy, for another year with a 28-24 triumph over Australia in Brisbane in September, the All Blacks completed a 3-1 series win over the Wallabies with Saturday night's success.

Mitchell's two strikes in the seventh and 26th minutes, both converted by Giteau, were the only tries of an entertaining first half.

But Carter's three penalty goals had the All Blacks ominously placed for a second-half fightback.

The All Blacks caught the Wallabies napping just 90 seconds after the interval when powerful winger Sitiveni Sivivatu crossed in the left-hand corner to tie the game up at 14-14.

The enthusiastic crowd then began to jeer the pedantic referee when he continued to stop play and, somewhat appropriately, he looked to have missed a forward pass from Sivivatu which set up the winning try for All Blacks captain Richie McCaw in the 64th minute.

The Wallabies must quickly bounce back from their latest disappointment.

They fly to Europe for four more Tests this month against Italy, England, France and Wales before winding up their longest and most demanding end-of-season tour in 13 years of professional rugby with a showdown with a world-15 strength Barbarians outfit at Wembley on December 3.

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