All Blacks on brink of history in England Test

2018-11-07 09:30
Steve Hansen (Getty Images)

Cape Town - A world record is in the offing for the All Blacks in their Test against England at Twickenham on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 17:00 SA time.

READ: World Rugby responds to Rassie Erasmus video with 'no comment'

According to the Stuff website's Aaron Goile, such has been their constantly threatening strikes this year, New Zealand are on the cusp of creating a new mark, 13, for the most consecutive Tests in which a team has scored four or more tries.

While it's a figure that doesn't hold any significant value aside from being bonus-point material in some tournaments - such as the Rugby World Cup since 2003, the Six Nations since 2017 and formerly the Rugby Championship until the 'three more than your opponents' rule came in in 2016 - the four-try feat is at least considered a pretty successful attacking day at the office.

Following the romp over Japan last Saturday, the All Blacks have equalled their own best streak, which was achieved in the first 12 of their 14 Tests in 2016 before they only managed three in each the last two games of that season, against Ireland and France.

This current run began in the final match of 2017, with five tries in the win against Wales in Cardiff.

New Zealand then started this year with a 3-0 series sweep of France, scoring eight in the first Test in Auckland and seven in the last in Dunedin, and, despite a wobbly showing in Wellington in between, they still managed to cross on four occasions in that one.

There was then four successive games with six tries scored - against Australia in Sydney and Auckland, against Argentina in Nelson, and against South Africa in Wellington, despite the latter seeing them on the wrong end of the scoreline.

After five tries against the Pumas in Buenos Aires the streak was set to end against the Springboks in Pretoria, but two last-gasp scores made for a four-try tally, then there was five against the Wallabies in Yokohama and 10 put on the Brave Blossoms in Tokyo.

It shows how consistently dangerous the men in black are, often in these games even operating with less than an equal share of possession. The willingness to attack from anywhere is unmistakable, while penalty goals also continue to become a thing of the past.

New Zealand also have some competition for the world record, from none other than Namibia - a team they are grouped with at next year's Rugby World Cup for a second successive time.

The African minnows also sit on a 12-game streak, having racked up their tries in wins over Tunisia, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya (two each), Morocco and Senegal, and in two losses to Uruguay.

In what will be their first game in almost three months, Namibia even have the chance to beat the All Blacks to the new mark, as they play a few hours prior, but the world No 22 should face a fairly stiff task, away to No 19-ranked Russia in Krasnodar.

Most consecutive Tests scoring four-plus tries:

12* - New Zealand (November 25, 2017 - November 3, 2018)
12* - Namibia (July 1, 2017 - August 18, 2018)
12 - New Zealand (June 11, 2016 - November 12, 2016)
11 - Cyprus (November 20, 2010 - March 16, 2013)
10 - South Africa (August 9, 1997 - June 27, 1998)
10 - Japan (July 8, 2001 - May 25, 2003)

*denotes streak is ongoing

All Blacks' current streak:

v Wales, Cardiff, Nov 2017 (5 tries)
v France, Auckland, Jun 2018 (8 tries)
v France, Wellington, Jun 2018 (4 tries)
v France, Dunedin, Jun 2018 (7 tries)
v Australia, Sydney, Aug 2018 (6 tries)
v Australia, Auckland, Aug 2018 (6 tries)
v Argentina, Nelson, Sep 2018 (6 tries)
v South Africa, Wellington, Sep 2018 (6 tries)
v Argentina, Buenos Aires, Sep 2018 (5 tries)
v South Africa, Pretoria, Oct 2018 (4 tries)
v Australia, Yokohama, Oct 2018 (5 tries)
v Japan, Tokyo, Nov 2018 (10 tries)

Read more on:    world rugby  |  all blacks  |  rugby


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