Smith credits All Blacks' forward performance for record Bok beating
All Black assistant coach Wayne Smith said their record-breaking 57-0 triumph against the Springboks had its roots in their dominant forward performance.
They owned the lineout and the breakdown and later in the game‚ gained the upper hand in the scrum to score eight tries on a night when everything the All Blacks touched turned to gold.
“The attitude was good and you could tell early in the week what the tension was like and what the edge was like‚" Smith said.
"You need a bit of edge to have a performance like the one we had. I could tell early on that this was going to be a big performance.
“It's been a while in coming because we haven't been as good this year.
"If you're stealing their lineout ball‚ it makes things easier but through the defence‚ we wanted to step up and wanted to be more physical.
"This game was the test because the Springboks have been brilliant. We've had a great attitude all week and we saw that in the line-speed and the collisions.”
The game was Smith's last one at home as an All Black assistant coach and this was the best way to sign off.
It was in his defensive forte where the team prospered and they shut the Boks out.
They've only conceded one try in three matches against the Springboks since last year.
Smith said he had a feeling the team owed themselves a wholehearted performance after the missed opportunities against the British and Irish Lions alongside the unexpectedly close game against the Pumas and the Wallabies.
“It was pretty special and this team knew there was going to be wholehearted performance.
"It was brutal in defence and brutal in attack and that's what we were looking for.
"I don't think I've seen a better forward display taking apart a team like that‚” Smith said
“It's about backing up the performance and while we've got the week off‚ the boys will work hard in that week physically but mentally they'll need to switch off.
"We need to take the same attitude in the next couple of games.”