All Blacks v England
After destroying Ireland 46-14, the All Blacks are seeking to find a similar level of performance against the English. who demolished Australia 41-16 in their quarter-final in Oita.
The All Blacks are fully aware they need to maintain or better the level they got to against the Irish – which was spectacular at times as they ran in seven tries.
“That’s one of the key things about sport isn’t it; being able to repeat and repeat and repeat,” All Blacks coach Hansen said. “It’s probably the hardest thing to do in sport. But one of the hardest things we’ve striven to do as a group is to be better than we were the day before. We don’t always achieve that but if you strive to do it you give yourself an opportunity.
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“We know that if we aren’t better we aren’t going to get what we want so it’s pretty simple.
“They’re playing good footy so they’ll be confident, as we will be. We’re playing well ourselves and we just have to make sure as a coaching group and management group where the players can express themselves on Saturday. That’s the task.”
Hansen said he felt England’s first-half defensive effort served to demoralise the Wallabies, who had to chase the game and became increasingly reckless as a result.
“I watched the first half of it and Australia hammered and hammered and got no success. When you get no success you get frustrated. Obviously we can’t afford to get frustrated against them. If we’re not having success we’ve just got to keep building the momentum and pressure until we do. Both sides are defending really well. It is going to be a big clash.”
Match details: Saturday October 26, 9:00pm (NZT), International Stadium, Yokohama City.
Referee: TBC Squads: TBC on Thursday
How to watch:
The Herald will be live blogging the match, with build-up starting in the morning. Radio Sport and Newstalk ZB will have exclusive commentary, while Spark Sport’s coverage starts at 7pm and the game is also live on TVNZ 1.
Alternatively, you can live stream the match on sparksport.co.nz or the Spark Sport app
Odds: New Zealand $1.32, England $3.25
Head to head: New Zealand and England have played 41 times, with the All Blacks winning 33 and the English 7, with one draw.
Last five encounters
• 2018 – All Blacks 16 England 15
• 2014 – All Blacks 24 England 21
• 2014 – All Blacks 36 England 13
• 2014 – All Blacks 28 England 27
• 2014 – All Blacks 20 England 15
At the RWC
• 1999 – All Blacks 30 England 16 – Pool Play
• 1995 – All Blacks 45 England 29 – Semi-final
• 1991 – All Blacks 18 England 12 – Pool play