Rugby

Watch: Australians Outraged At Ref's Performance As New Zealand Secure Win

Watch: Australians Outraged At Ref's Performance As New Zealand Secure Win

New Zealand completed a clean sweep of the Bledisloe Cup series as they defeated Australia 37-20 at the Nissan Stadium this morning.

The arena is the same venue that will host the 2019 World Cup Final, and there were some grounds for optimism for the teams seeking to challenge the All Blacks for the crown next year. Australia trailed by just seven points at half-time and would have stayed within touching distance if not for poor fitness levels and at least one questionable refereeing decision.

Michael Cheika's side were reduced to 14 men when Tolo Latu was sent to the sin bin for an open hand push to the face of Codie Taylor.

 

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Then, with the score 1t 13-27, Australia pounded away at the New Zealand defence until a loose Israel Folau offload fell to Ben Smith who stormed towards the line. However, experienced All-black half-back Aaron Smith seemed to change his line to cut off a covering Kurtley Beale run.

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World Rugby define obstruction an offence in both of these cases: 'A player must not intentionally prevent an opponent from tackling or attempting to tackle the ball-carrier. A player must not intentionally prevent an opponent from having the opportunity to play the ball, other than by competing for possession.'

While Beale did protest, referee Romain Poite seemed content that Smith did nothing illegal.

Speaking on Fox, former Australian player Phil Kearns said: "other teams are upset at the free ride New Zealand get." The analysts went on to cite the penalty count weighted in New Zealand's favour.

Despite this, Steve Hansen's side were full value for their victory. New Zealand now move on towards their Autumn internationals, with the big one coming on 17 November as they play Ireland in the Aviva Stadium.

SEE ALSO: Sexton Believes Ireland Vs New Zealand 2016 Was Pivotal Moment In Rugby

Maurice Brosnan

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