TODAY |

Aussie media tear into 'panicked' All Blacks after Steve Hansen drops big guns for Bledisloe decider

Australian media are continuing to rip into the All Blacks ahead of this weekend's Bledisloe Cup decider with a fresh wave of stories this morning saying the team and coach Steve Hansen are feeling the pressure.

The Aussies have woken to the news of Hansen's squad for this Saturday's contest at Eden Park, which has seen veterans Ben Smith and Owen Franks along with star Rieko Ioane benched. Replacing them are relatively new All Blacks Sevu Reece, Nepo Laulala and George Bridge, respectively.

The changes are a sign that the All Blacks and Hansen are under the pump, Fox Sports' Christy Doran said.

Doran called the moves "their biggest selection cull in years" and "a decision that points to panic".

"It leaves New Zealand with their least experienced wing combination since Doug Howlett and Bruce Reihana started a Test against France in Marseilles 19 years ago."

After teasing older members of the New Zealand squad as senior citizens yesterday, the Daily Telegraph were back at it referring to the All Blacks selectors as "desperate".

The Sydney newspaper added that the selection changes "suggested serious misgivings about the direction of the All Blacks".

The All Blacks have had a rough start to 2019 with an unconvincing win over Argentina followed up with their draw against the Springboks in Wellington and last week's thumping in Perth.

However, the All Blacks are back in their Eden Park fortress this week where it's been 33 years since the Wallabies have tasted victory.

Your playlist will load after this ad

A loss to the Wallabies at Eden Park will see the All Blacks' lengthy hold on the Bledisloe Cup end. Source: 1 NEWS

The All Blacks have also not lost a Test at the ground since 1994 and in the past five clashes between the trans-Tasman rivals at the Auckland stadium, the Wallabies have lost on average by 27 points.

Former Wallaby Simon Poidevin told the another Australian outlet, the Sydney Morning Herald, that Eden Park is a "great weapon" for the All Blacks.

"It will be a cauldron of hate at Eden Park. The Kiwi supporters will be spewing that Australia just scored the biggest score ever against an All Black team. All the pressure is on the All Blacks mentally because they know if they lose this one then there are pretty severe consequences.

"It’s a huge pressure cooker for both teams."

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 10: Patrick Tuipulotu of the All Blacks is dejected after the loss during the 2019 Bledisloe Cup test match between the New Zealand All Blacks and the Qantas Wallabies at Optus Stadium, August 10 2019 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Carson \ Photosport NZ)
Patrick Tuipulotu of the All Blacks is dejected after the loss during the 2019 Bledisloe Cup test match Source: Photosport


More From