Brendan Venter says that all departments of the All Blacks’ game are a ‘bit off’ and that they have become like any other Test team.
The All Blacks have lost to the Springboks and Ireland this year, while they were lucky to escape with wins over the Boks in Pretoria and England at Twickenham.
In his latest column for Stuff.co.nz, Venter writes that the All Blacks’ inconsistent performances of late are down to the fact that they are not doing everything better than their opponents anymore.
‘Whenever I coached against and analysed the All Blacks, you couldn’t put your finger on what they do, but the bottom line was that they just did everything better than everybody else. What has happened now is that they are not doing everything better – all departments are a bit off – and in the process they have become like any other team.
‘The point is that nothing is exceptional anymore with the All Blacks. Their ball is not as quick as it used to be, their set-piece and kicking game isn’t firing, their defence is not as strong as it was and their attack is not as penetrative, which was underlined by the fact that Ireland kept them tryless.
‘It’s not as if the All Blacks are 10% worse than before, they are only 1 or 2% off their game, but against top teams at Test level the margins are slim.
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