All Blacks

Cleary pops up for Pumas as Tri Nations heats up

The former NSW Blues and Knights halfback was invited to training by Wallabies attack coach Scott Wisemantel on Thursday.

Johns, who previously dropped in on Eddie Jones' England camp during their 3-0 whitewash series win in Australia in 2016, only spent 30 minutes with the Wallabies but his appearance went down a treat.

It's believed Johns had hoped to fly under the radar but Wallabies halfback Nic White let the cat out of the bag by posting a photo on his Instagram account.

All Blacks prepare for the Maradona factor

So, will normal service resume in Newcastle? Or will Los Pumas be able to repeat their Sydney heroics?

Coach Ian Foster is feeling the strain with some fans already calling for him to be sacked, but he's not ready to back down and is confident his side will win Saturday night's test.

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Argentina overhaul team for second crack at All Blacks

Ledesma had made only minor tweaks to his side for last week's clash against the Wallabies after the breakthrough win over New Zealand in their tournament opener, but drew fully on his squad for Thursday's team announcement.

Nicolas Sanchez, who has scored all of Argentina's 40 points in their first two matches, remains at first-five with inspirational captain Pablo Matera and Marcos Kremer retained in the back row and Guido Petti at lock.

All Blacks hang out with film stars Idris Elba and Taika Waititi in Sydney

Wearing their club rugby jerseys, the All Blacks were snapped in a group photo with Waititi and Elba, who donned the team's famous shirt.

“Humbling experience for the boys, meeting two of Hollywood’s finest,” the All Blacks posted on Twitter.

Oscar-winning director Waititi is in Australia for the filming of Thor: Love and Thunder, which features Australian actor and Thor star Chris Hemsworth and is set for release in 2022.

Hemsworth revealed on Instagram in October the first meeting had gone so well that Waititi needed to take a nap outside in the sun.

All Black Liam Messam thought Steve Hansen 'hated' him

The 36-year-old, who earned 43 test caps over eight years and won a World Cup in 2015, even thought Hansen “hated him”.

Messam particularly copped plenty of stick from Hansen, who was then an assistant coach under Graham Henry, in 2009, after the then 25-year-old started at No 8 and had a match to forget during a shock 27-22 loss against France in Dunedin.

“A lot of things didn't go well for me – I fell off a few tackles, I probably didn't put in enough back-to-back efforts – and I can remember it so clearly," Messam wrote in a column for The XV.

Wallabies yet to learn from mistakes as Tri-Nations door opens for All Blacks

Five games into Dave Rennie’s tenure as coach, the results column reads two draws, two losses and one win, with the latest stalemate on Saturday evening tossing up more questions than answers.

Had Hodge booted a 78th-minute penalty, Australians would have been lauding the team’s stoic ability to grind out a win. But in White’s view, that would have been to gloss over inaccuracy and poor execution in the lead-up.

Regardless of full-time scorelines, the "inaccuracy" line is beginning to sound like a broken record out of Wallabies camp.

Ex-All Blacks star Sonny Bill Williams in line for shock career switch

 

According to a report out of the Sydney Morning Herald, Williams could be in line to become a commentator for both rugby union and rugby league on Australian network Channel 9.

The news comes shortly after the announcement that Channel 9 had acquired rugby union broadcasting rights in a $100m, three-year deal that will see certain Super Rugby AU matches and Wallabies tests broadcast free-to-air in Australia.

All Blacks send three players home early

The All Blacks picked an extended tour party of 36 players because of Covid-19 and coach Ian Foster said it was always the intention to send some players home at this stage of the trip.

Midfielder Umaga-Jensen originally came into the squad as injury cover for Reiko Ioane while loose foward Kirifi was called in while Ardie Savea was on parental leave.

Tu'ungafasi was an automatic candidate for an early return home when he was suspended for three matches for a high tackle in the All Blacks loss to Australia in Brisbane, ruling him out of any further part in the tour.

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Argentina make history with 25-15 defeat of All Blacks

Up 16-3 at halftime, the Pumas tackled their hearts out in the second half to take the win.

Nicolas Sanchez scored all of Argentina's points with a try, six penalties and a conversion, while the Pumas held off a fierce late onslaught from the All Blacks to secure a famous victory in their first test for more than a year.

It was Argentina's first defeat of the All Blacks in 30 attempts going back to 1985.

Former All Black Dan Carter gets growing with Movember

But the former All Blacks star was facing one of his toughest challenges this month - growing a moustache to raise awareness about mental health.

"I can't grow a strong mo' (moustache)," Carter, who normally only has to shave about twice a week, said on Thursday.

"I have done bits and pieces over the years but never committed to growing one for a month.

"It's been just over a week and it's pathetic really."