Umaga: England proved point
By Ben Blackmore. Last Updated: 20/11/05 1:45pm
New Zealand captain Tana Umaga was greatly impressed with England after the All Blacks' narrow 23-19 victory, and he admitted that their opponents had 'proved a point' at Twickenham.
The talented centre's comments were made in reference to the British Lions Series, in which nine of England's starting XV featured as the Kiwis ran riot during a 3-0 whitewash.
The tourists felt that they had not even begun to display their true talents whilst on that that summer tour, and Umaga confirmed that he saw the real England on Saturday.
"A lot of this England team went on the Lions tour and I think they had a point to prove, and I think they did it," said the New Zealand captain, who scored his side's first try.
"Fortunately for us we came out on the right side, but that has to be up there with one of our toughest wins of the year. There is no doubt about that.
"It's what we've come to expect playing England. They're a very physical and confrontational side, and that's certainly what we got on Saturday.
"A lot of their guys put their bodies on the line and a lot of our guys did as well, and that's what Test rugby is all about."
The victory confirmed New Zealand's status as the number one nation in world rugby, and they now go on to face Scotland in the final leg of the quest to complete the Grand Slam of home nations.