Sunday Star-Times - - SPORT -

Ben Smith 4: Poor start drop­ping his first three high balls and didn’t look right. Off in the 27th minute for a con­cus­sion test and didn’t re­turn. Is­rael Dagg 8: A big pres­ence with an early try-sav­ing tackle, pow­er­ful boot and lively counter-at­tack. Brilliant off­load for Rieko Ioane’s first try. Top night’s work. Ryan Crotty 6: Busy start and com­bined ef­fec­tively with Sonny Bill Wil­liams on at­tack and de­fence. Off with a ham­string in­jury in the 33rd minute. Sonny Bill Wil­liams 7: Ran head­long into the Lions’ mid­field all night and de­fended stoutly. Few trade­mark off­loads but the phys­i­cal pres­ence the All Blacks needed. Rieko Ioane 7: Saw very lit­tle ball in the first half then took his two chances su­perbly. Pace a huge as­set, and no mean feat to burn off El­liot Daly for the match-seal­ing try. Beau­den Bar­rett 7.5: Well con­tained by the Lions de­fence but showed some mag­i­cal touches and strong in the air when he switched to full­back. Per­fect night off the kick­ing tee a high­light. Aaron Smith 7.5: Picked for his speed of mind and pass, and de­liv­ered with a busy, de­ci­sive per­for­mance. Di­rected the at­tack well and his quick taps helped with some killer blows. Kieran Read 8.5: A colos­sus. Six weeks off? Who cares. Car­ried end­lessly and pro­duced one jolt­ing tackle to snuff out a Lions raid that shook Eden Park. Won­der­ful touch off the scrum for Ioane’s first try. Sam Cane 8: Huge work-rate and kept pace with Read. Every­where on de­fence, forced turnover­sand ripped the ball from Ge­orge Kruis like he was a10-year-old. Jerome Kaino 5: Rarely sighted in the first half and off in the 46th minute af­ter col­lid­ing with Cane. Sam White­lock 7: Early poor read on de­fence but then re­verted to type with an en­er­getic per­for­mance around the park. Brodie Re­tal­lick 8: Mas­sive first half and helped the All Blacks gain as­cen­dancy. Car­ried, off­loaded and forced turnovers with his gad­get arms. Highly in­flu­en­tial. Owen Franks 6.5: Scrum was strong on his watch, con­ceded one po­ten­tially costly penalty. Subbed in the 54th minute. Codie Tay­lor 7: Throw­ing fell away late as the li­ne­out wob­bled but pretty good all-round. Stun­ning pickup for his try and copped a pow­er­ful fend dur­ing a Lions raid. Joe Moody 7: Solid per­for­mance, one storm­ing run and the scrum was very good. Joined his mate Franks wan­der­ing off in the 54th. Re­serves: Wy­att Crock­ett 7 (54th minute): Ar­rived and the All Blacks pro­duced a mon­ster scrum to set up a try. Solid as usual. Char­lie Fau­muina 7 (54th): Handy dou­ble act off the bench with Crock­ett and just lifted the pow­er­ful All Blacks for­ward dis­play. Ardie Savea 7 (46th): Did his job and a men­ace at the break­down as the game tilted the All Blacks’ way, added punch and en­ergy. TJ Per­e­nara 7.5 (57th): Made an im­pact, again. Kicked ac­cu­rately for Ioane’s sec­ond try and pinched a turnover. Busy and ef­fec­tive, the ideal bench half­back. Aaron Cru­den 7 (27th): Shaky early, then grew into the game strongly. Ex­cel­lent vi­sion and set up his out­sides well. Solid night at the of­fice. An­ton Lienert-Brown 7 (33rd): Un­lucky to be benched in the first place and didn’t let any­one down. Not rated: Nathan Har­ris, Scott Bar­rett. - MARK GEENTY


Rieko Ioane grabbed two tries with aplomb.


Sonny Bill Wil­liams charges into the Lions de­fence.

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