WELLINGTON, Oct 22 (Reuters) - World champions New Zealand were challenged for 50 minutes but still ran in six tries to beat 37-10 Australia in Auckland on Saturday to become the first top tier nation to win 18 consecutive test matches.
Less than a year after becoming the first nation to win back-to-back World Cups and with a much-changed line-up, Steve Hansen’s side bolstered their claim to being the greatest ever rugby team.
Julian Savea scored two tries as Israel Dagg, Anton Lienert-Brown, TJ Perenara and Dane Coles also crossed to help the 2015-16 All Blacks better the record held by the 2013-2014 and 1965-1969 vintages, as well as the 1997-1998 Springboks.
New Zealand’s last defeat was at the hands of the Wallabies in Sydney last year but Australia breaking their 30-year Eden Park hoodoo was always going to be a tall order, even if a try from Rory Arnold was scant consolation for a spirited display. (Reporting by Nick Mulvenney in Sydney; Editing by John O‘Brien)