• ‘All Blacks are greatest ever’

    What former Bok coach NICK MALLETT had to say on SuperSport about the All Blacks' victory over the Wallabies in the World Cup final at Twickenham:

    'I thought the All Blacks were dominant in the first 20 minutes and they just didn’t take their opportunities, while some turnovers from Australia kept them in the game. But we never saw Australia looking like scoring a point in those first 20 minutes. I also loved the try just before half-time, the attitude of the All Blacks is so positive, they didn't want to just protect a lead. They managed to score and suddenly it was 16-3 instead of 9-3, and it's such a difference.

    ‘Richie McCaw’s performance was absolutely outstanding, and Dan Carter was just so good at the right moments. He was so calm and tactically so astute. There was one mistake I picked out from the All Blacks' performance and it was when Ben Smith was in the sin bin for a yellow card, but they controlled the 10 minutes so well except for when Nehe Milner-Skudder missed touch at a time when Smith could have come back on. The counter-attack ultimately resulted in Australia scoring their second try, but the All Blacks are so good at learning from their mistakes, and Milner-Skudder won't make that mistake again.

    'What the All Blacks have got 100% right and we haven't in South Africa is the top-down system of control. They decide who their best players are, and the best game plan that will be most effective going forward, and you see it coming through in their teams, at Super Rugby and national levels.

    'People are saying is this the greatest team? I wonder why we are still asking that question. There have been just three defeats in 54 games, a couple of draws, but there has been just such a phenomenal win record over four years. They've retained the World Cup and found ways to win games they should lose. And when they get it right they hammer teams. This was 34-17 in a final, it was a tough game, but they still won by that margin. That's some achievement.'

    Photo: Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

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    Nick Mallett