Veteran All Black forwards set to rectify mistakes before clash against Springboks

The All Blacks' 57-22 win over Argentina in Hamilton on Saturday didn't truly reflect how much pressure Steve Hansen's men were actually under by the gallant Pumas.

Argentina managed to break through NZ's defence early on with relative ease with their offloads and clever darting runs through the rucks. Source: 1 NEWS

Argentina turned up and they were willing to chance their arm against the number one ranked rugby team in the world, creating havoc in the breakdown and taking their opportunities when they could.

Veteran All Black Jerome Kaino admitted the starting forwards were a little shell-shocked by the pace at which the game was being played at.

“We pride ourselves on quick ball and Aaron (Smith) to have an easy night and in that first half we didn't do that, we didn't provide it," said Kaino.

"As a pack we took that personally and that is one massive area we want to improve on this week."

But the All Blacks machine adapted to the South Americans' tactics, bringing on an array of changes in the second half which blew the game wide open.

Kaino, 33, credited the impetus that the bench players brought onto the pitch when they entered the game.

"We pride ourselves on our fitness and for the guys to weather that storm in the first 50 (minutes) and change gears; our bench came on and added a lot of energy."

Sam Whitelock, 27, agreed with his teammate Kaino, with the lacklustre way the team started against the Pumas.

All Blacks first-five Barrett played a key role breaking open the game against the Pumas, scoring a try and setting up several in Hamilton in the weekend. Source: 1 NEWS

"We didn't really have a good night. It is something that we are going to be looking at this afternoon as we have a forwards meeting just around what the issue was and how we can improve it," said Whitelock.

The Springboks suffered their second straight loss in the Rugby Championship on Saturday at the hands of the Wallabies, going down 23-17 in Brisbane.

The South African side will be looking to bounce back against an in-form New Zealand team.

Whitelock believes the All Blacks' forward pack needs to plug up some major holes which the Argentinians identified, making sniping runs in and around the breakdown area gaining good positive ground.

"Going forward it is going to be critical against a good set piece team like South Africa.

"One of the really big positive things for us was we adapted on the run rather than waiting for the game to finish and sorting those issues out."

The All Blacks take on the Springboks this Saturday in Christchurch at 7.35pm.

The last time the two sides met was at the 2015 Rugby World Cup in London where the All Blacks edged South Africa 20-18.

Humble Rieko Ioane not targeting All Blacks' try scoring record: 'I'm just enjoying what I'm doing'

All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane says he's not motivated by Doug Howlett's all-time try scoring record, having re-signed with New Zealand Rugby yesterday.

Ioane, 21, has scored 18 tries from 18 Test appearances and would appear likely to overtake Howlett's record of 49 tries in 62 Tests, if he were to stay fit and represent the All Blacks for the majority of his professional career.

However, speaking at Auckland Airport as the All Blacks departed for Argentina yesterday, Ioane said that the prospect of writing his name into the record books played no part in his decision to stay in New Zealand.

"It's different for everyone, but I just want to keep playing good footy, consistent footy," he said.

"Hopefully, if I keep doing that, then things take care of itself.

"I'm just enjoying what I'm doing. My sole focus is having fun and being consistent."

The young winger is on course to eclipse Doug Howlett's all-time record. Source: 1 NEWS



'I'm a proud Aucklander' – Rieko Ioane targets Blues' return to glory with new NZ Rugby deal

All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane says the desire to see the Blues return to the top of Super Rugby was a key factor in his decision to remain with New Zealand Rugby as he signed a four-year deal.

Ioane, 21, and brother Akira both put pen to paper on new contracts with the elder Ioane recommitting to New Zealand Rugby for an extra three years.

However, with the Blues not having won Super Rugby since 2003, Ioane said that helping his boyhood club back to glory was a huge motivation in his decision to stay.

"We look forward to the challenge it brings," Ioane said.

"Being from Auckland, something that we hold dear to our hearts is taking our franchise, our city to places where it should be.

"We want to see it at the top, and hopefully if we're part of it it'll be something special."

Ioane also spoke about the prospect of turning down other New Zealand Super Rugby franchises.

"There's always going to be that temptation, but for me, the huge factor is being at home.

"I'm a proud Aucklander, and I just want to inspire the change that gets us to where we need to get to."

The All Blacks winger re-signed with New Zealand Rugby today. Source: 1 NEWS



Waikato notch half-century in eight-try romp over Bay of Plenty Steamers

Waikato have continued their surge towards promotion to the Mitre 10 Cup Premiership, destroying Bay of Plenty 54-21 in an eight-try demolition in Rotorua.

Having lost their first three games of the 2018 season, Jono Gibbes' side are now unbeaten in their last four, sitting comfortably atop the Mitre 10 Cup Championship table.

Lock James Tucker opened the scoring after just 10 minutes, before Waikato raced out to a 21-0 lead.

The Steamers would get one back before the break though, as Hugh Blake crashed over to see the hosts down 21-7 at the halftime break.

In the second half though, it was all Waikato.

The Mooloos ran in another five tries, coming to Samisoni Taukei'aho, Quinn Tupaea - who grabbed a double, Sekope Lopeti-Moli and Matthew Lansdown to seal the comfortable win.

Waikato are next in action in a Ranfurly Shield challenge next Saturday, while Bay of Plenty host Manawatu on Thursday.

The Mooloos were too good, surging to a 54-21 victory in Rotorua. Source: SKY


'Mum and dad will be stoked' - Ioane brothers thrilled to re-sign with NZ Rugby

All Blacks winger Rieko Ioane has hailed the influence of older brother Akira, as the pair today recommitted to New Zealand Rugby for another four years.

Rieko, 21, and Akira, 23, both put pen to paper on new deals, deciding to remain within New Zealand for the foreseeable future.

Speaking to media at Auckland Airport, Rieko spoke about the pair's decisions to stay at home in New Zealand.

"We've been lucky enough to play together for so long," he said.

"I'm pretty happy that both Aki and I are staying around home for a bit longer.

"I'm sure mum and dad will be stoked as well."

Both Rieko and Akira Ioane have penned new deals to stay in NZ. Source: 1 NEWS