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Sunday, September 08, 2013

New Zealand victory over Argentina soured by injury to skipper McCaw

Scrumhalf Aaron Smith scored twice as the All Blacks beat Argentina 28-13 in a wet and fairly scrappy Rugby Championship match in Hamilton. Victory came at a cost though as captain Richie McCaw picked up a knee injury and will be out for at least three weeks.

McCaw, who equalled Jason Leonard's record as the most capped forward of all time, had his left knee bent under the pressure of teammate Charlie Faumuina in the 60th minute of the match. The medial ligament damage will keep him out of the crucial clash with the Springboks next weekend.

The All Blacks are hopeful that he'll be available for the fixture against them in Johannesburg, but it's more likely to be a case of aiming for the final Bledisloe Cup match against Australia.

"By the end of the week, we'll have a pretty good idea, so hopefully, maybe, he might get the second South African game," said coach Steve Hansen, who explained that McCaw won't require surgery. "Doc' thinks he will definitely get the third Bledisloe game."

Other than that, they chalked up another win but it wasn't the most fluid of performances, with some uncharacteristic errors being forced by not only the weather, but the pressure from a determinded and very physical Argentina side.

"It wasn't a night for the backs so we won't reflect too much on those kind of areas. We'll look at things we can tidy up in our structures around the park," Hansen added.

While Argentina scored early to the delight of neutrals everywhere, one of the highlights of the game for the home side, and fans around the world no doubt, will have been Kieran Read's superb around the corner pass for Aaron Smith's first try.

Smith added to it not long after, before Julian Savea crossed in the second half.

Highlights of the match are below, and you can view McCaw leading the Haka on page two

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Posted by Rugbydump at 6:03 am | View Comments (4)

Posted in All Blacks, The Rugby Championship

Viewing 4 comments

dave September 08, 2013 6:43 pm

predicting next weeks clash between the boks and all blacks is going to be hard, I expected the wallabies to win the other day and boy I was wrong, the boks are looking great but at the same rate they've only defended toothless offenses, the all blacks are a different matter, the game is going to be decided in the front row (yes I know that's obvious) if the all blacks gain parity they will win, also who was the last team to beat the all blacks in eden park that's another factor, and there game will be raised to face their oldest foe, I like how the boks are looking but somethings i'm hearing in the media I think are ungrounded, like this boks side being better then the 2007 wc winning side, if those 2 teams were to play I think the 2007 boks would stifle any offence from the current, boss the breakdown and feed off the indiscipline in the current boks side winning with penalities but as I said again the boks look great I give them a 45% chance of winning at eden park next week and I consider that flattering, what are the rest of you thinking?

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Kiwi In Germany September 08, 2013 7:33 pm

This was mostly average from the ABs with flashes of brilliance. Too many mistakes... Can't afford those against SA. No McCaw next week. Will be a hard match I think less than 5 in it.

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jimter10 September 09, 2013 7:43 am

Argentina were good all in all. They gave away a couple of soft tries, but ABs will always find a way.

Argentina's defence, intensity at the ruck and some of their scrums was formidable. I think they prefer not having the put in and just having an 8 man shove.

I live in NZ and people were phoning into the radiosport and predicting that all the backs would score and most of the forwards.

I can't wait for Argentina to edge on against NZ. We'll start with Australia hopefully....

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Rukhage September 09, 2013 5:20 pm

I agree that the Pumas were solid on defence and actually held out for the whole game and didn't collapse physically in the last 10 minutes. That for me is a huge step forward. The one thing the Pumas have to start doing is being more proactive in attack, that's the only way we will be able to create scoring situations and not depend on the rival's errors. Because frankly it seemed that the ABs didn't bring their whole game to the match.

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