world dom­i­na­tion

NEW ZEALAND 34-17 AUS­TRALIA OC­TO­BER 31, 2015 // TWICK­EN­HAM STA­DIUM, LON­DON

NZ Rugby World - - Contents -

No team had ever suc­cess­fully de­fended their world ti­tle and given that six cham­pi­ons had tried and failed, there was a feel­ing it would never be done. It was just too hard to ei­ther keep a team to­gether for four years un­til the next tour­na­ment or suc­cess­fully re­gen­er­ate with enough new faces to give the team a new edge.

But the All Blacks did it: they man­aged to hold onto half of their squad that won in 2011. Against the odds per­haps, Richie McCaw, Dan Carter, Con­rad Smith, Ma’a Nonu, Keven Mealamu and Tony Wood­cock, who were all close to or in their early thir­ties at the pre­vi­ous World Cup, made it to Eng­land still as gen­uine world class play­ers.

Bol­ster­ing this old guard and en­er­gis­ing the side were new play­ers such as Brodie Re­tal­lick, Dane Coles, Aaron Smith, Ju­lian Savea, Ben Smith and Nehe Mil­nerSkud­der.

Amid sug­ges­tions they could only win World Cups on home soil and that they would once again choke or that they were tool old, the All Blacks pro­duced the per­fect cam­paign to win the tour­na­ment as eas­ily the best side there.

It com­pleted a six-year pe­riod where they only lost six tests. And it gave the 2012-2015 team, who only lost three tests in that pe­riod, a le­git­i­mate claim to be con­sid­ered the most dom­i­nant in the world.

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