Rugby Championship: New Zealand clinch bonus-point win

Last Updated: 29/09/13 11:12am

  • Share:

Sky Bet

A late try from Ben Smith secured a vital bonus point as New Zealand moved a step closer to clinching the Rugby Championship with a 33-15 victory over Argentina.

The All Blacks, who had started the game in La Plata level on points with South Africa, who had comfortably beaten Australia 28-8 earlier on Saturday, only led the Pumas by two points at the break.

They then found themselves trailing at the start of the second half before two tries in the space of five minutes gave them a comfortable cushion.

Smith scored one of them, then crossed again in the dying moments to leave New Zealand only needing to avoid a bonus-point defeat at the hands of the Springboks in Johannesburg next week to claim the trophy.

Argentina certainly made their opponents work for the win, a pair of Nicolas Sanchez penalties at one stage putting them 6-3 ahead.

The lead could have been even greater, too, had Marcelo Bosch not made a mess of a penalty from inside his own half and Sanchez found the target with a drop-goal attempt.

A further three points went begging in the 20th minute when Sanchez pulled a penalty wide, and the hosts paid the price for their missed opportunities soon after.

Loose ball

Julian Savea picked up a loose ball in midfield and sprinted down the left to cross for the game's first try - confirmed after lengthy deliberation by the video official about a potential offside.

Aaron Cruden missed the conversion, even after been allowed to take it a second time when he was distracted by a laser from the crowd, but did land a second penalty to make it 11-6.

Sanchez cut the deficit to two and Argentina moved ahead again straight after the break when Bosch slotted over from halfway.

Cruden responded immediately and then the All Blacks hit their opponents with a quick-fire double, Sam Crane going over in the corner before Smith grabbed his first of the night.

With one of the two conversions going over New Zealand led 26-12 all of a sudden. Sanchez kicked a penalty to stop the rot for Argentina, but they simply had too much ground to make up.

After seeing Savea, chasing a kick from Conrad Smith, fumble the ball yards from the line, Ben Smith made no mistake in the closing seconds when he forced his way over.

  • Share:

Related

The Rugby Championship 2013

James Horwill: Everything clicked into place

Horwill: Came right in the end

James Horwill was a satisfied Australian skipper after the Wallabies crushed Argentina 54-17 in Rosario

Just two good

New Zealand and South Africa have taken rugby union to a whole new level, says Will Greenwood.

Richie McCaw: Victory didn't come easily

McCaw: We had to dig deep

Richie McCaw admitted the All Blacks were pushed to the limit during their 38-27 victory over South Africa on Saturday

Most Popular

Features

Willian's Team Mates

Willian's Team Mates

Who's got the worst clobber at Chelsea? Who trains the hardest? The Blues winger reveals all...

Butcher's dream team

Butcher's dream team

See who made England legend Terry Butcher's #One2Eleven on The Fantasy Football Club.

Redknapp: Costa made difference

Redknapp: Costa made difference

Diego Costa has shown the impact he can have at Chelsea, but injuries are a worry, says Jamie Redknapp.