All Blacks hold on for 16-15 come­back win over Eng­land

The Malta Independent on Sunday - - SPORT -

New Zealand sur­vived a late scare to hold on for a 16-15 come­back vic­tory over Eng­land at Twick­en­ham in their first matchup in four years yes­ter­day.

Eng­land thought it se­cured a rare vic­tory over the world cham­pion when Sam Un­der­hill touched down five min­utes from full­time, but video re­view re­vealed Court­ney Lawes was off­side when he made a charge­down to launch the move.

Eng­land made a dream start as Chris Ash­ton and co-cap­tain Dy­lan Hart­ley scored tries ei­ther side of an Owen Far­rell dropped goal for 15-0 af­ter 24 min­utes.

New Zealand struck back through full­back Damian McKen­zie near half­time, then a cru­cial kick­off er­ror from Far­rell al­lowed the All Blacks to close the deficit to five points at the break.

Both sides had op­por­tu­ni­ties for more tries af­ter in the se­cond half but chances were re­peat­edly spurned in the spoil­ing rain. Beau­den Bar­rett's dropped goal and penalty put the All Blacks ahead on the hour mark, set­ting up a dra­matic fi­nale.

Af­ter up­set­ting the Spring­boks by a point, an even bet­ter Eng­land per­for­mance gave Ed­die Jones' side plenty of rea­son for op­ti­mism less than a year out from the Rugby World Cup in Ja­pan.

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