Nehe Milner-Skudder and Julian Savea got two tries each and the All Blacks had their bonus point try within 30 minutes as the superiority of the top-ranked side told over the world number 20 minnows.
With the tournament taking place in England and Wales, Mr D and I are taking advantage of it being (more or less)on our doorstep and will be soaking up some of the RWC atmosphere as we venture south to take in a couple of games.
Namibia were never in danger of causing a Japan-style shock – in fact there was talk of the All Blacks racking up a World Cup record score against them.
The All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has made 12 changes from the side that beat Argentina at Wembley on Sunday, and one of those is replacing the talismanic skipper Richie McCaw for Cane. “I think it has done that in recent times”, said Smith. “We are looking for our first win in a Rugby World Cup and this is the first time we have come here to challenge ourselves”.
Stoppages littered the match, especially as Namibia exhausted, and New Zealand’s usual slick movement was snagged by slow ball, handling errors and frequent shrills from the referee’s whistle.
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“Overall, the effort the players put in, and if you consider previous World Cup results against tier one nations, we’ve taken a step forward”, the former Welsh worldwide said.
Unable to create the speed and flow it enjoys, New Zealand could merely be happy to wrap up a second win from two games in Pool C without any serious injuries.
Another big score was predicted from a game in which they were the 77-point favorites at Olympic Stadium on Thursday, but Namibia promised it wouldn’t lose by that much and it fulfilled its promise.
“There’s just a genuine excitement about trying to do something that every team that comes to the World Cup wants to do”. “We need to play more teams like that to get that belief and get that psychological edge to know that we can compete”. “But credit to them, they put a lot of pressure on at the breakdown”.
Foster said the All Blacks first half performance against Namibia, when they scored five of their nine tries, was pleasing but they went off the boil after halftime.
Their worst World Cup performance was a nightmarish 142-0 thrashing by Australia in 2003, but coach Phil Davies says those bumbling days are long gone. “I think that’s the key thing for tonight and we will get to work on the analysis and the selection side of things tomorrow”.