New Zealand humiliate Italy
October 14, 1999
Jeff Wilson crosses for hiss econd try, breaking John Kirwan's New Zealand record
© Getty Images
New Zealand progressed magnificently and ominously as they overwhelmed and humiliated Italy 101- 3 with a scintillating display of attacking football.
The Italians made a great start to the game after Tony Brown showed early nerves and missed his first kick to touch. Their pack stormed the left hand corner and only desperate defence prevented a sensational early try.Thereafter, Italy were never in the game and were down 51-3 at half time.
Brown kicked his first penalty after 6 minutes, from a scrum on the Italian 22 Gibson made ground before Italy went offside. Jeff Wilson quickly followed this with a try after Osborne had fielded a kick, made ground through the middle and linked with Alatini. Shortly after Dominguez got the Italians on the board for the one and only time with a penalty.
Brown added a try of his own after intercepting a pass on the Italian 22. Dominguez hit a post with his second penalty but New Zealand's play became disjointed as their kicking became wayward and their handling loose. Kelleher nearly scored a typically sniping try in the left corner before Mika scored beneath a pile of bodies. This was in the 30th minute and Brown converted to make the score 29-3.
Referee Fleming ran out of patience with the Italians persistently coming up offside and issued an official warning to the whole side.
Lomu joined a 33rd minute 5 metre scrum and scored from no 8. Wilson then scored his 36th try - beating John Kirwan's all time New Zealand record - and Osborne latched on to a movement involving Brown,Gibson,Alatini, Wilson and Gibson again. All Italy could offer was spoiling but the game had become a rout as Brown's 40th minute penalty took them past 50 points.
The Italians made 3 changes at half time, including the replacement of Dominguez, but it did nothing to stem the black tide. Moscardi was yellow carded for killing the ball after being on the field 3 minutes. Wilson scored his third try, and New Zealand their 7th after 11 minutes of rather scrappy play.
Taine Randell scored his first try of the campaign as he pounced on an Italian kick which failed to find touch. Lomu scored his second try, taking a pass on the halfway line from Kelleher and cruised down the left flank unopposed. Rhys Duggan then replaced Kelleher to make his All Black debut and Scott Robertson replaced Blowers.
Italy came back with a spirited surge up the right flank but the desperation in their play eventually let them down,Lomu made another powerful run up the left and was well supported by hooker Hammett.After his injury against Tonga Kees Meeuuws returned in place of Greg Feek.
Daryl Gibson scored his first test try in the 68th minute after great running and passing by Wilson and Osborne. Italian discipline in all areas of the game had by now evaporated completely.
Robertson scored his first test try after powerful work by Lomu and clever hands by Wilson and Osborne. Randell was then replaced by centre Cullen, LOmu joining the pack at no 8, as had been hinted might happen in pre-tournament training sessions. Cullen immediately scored as Osborne made ground down the left and sent him into space. Hammett then capped a fine performance with his first test try from a five metre penalty.
In the last minute Osborne took New Zealand to 99 points, finishing a magnificent, sweeping movement. Brown converted to bring up the 100, and to increase his personal tally to 36 points.
Hardly time to catch ones breath! Great rugby from a side that is developing into a formidable unit.
As Ray McLoughlin prepares to celebrate his 75th birthday, Huw Richards pays tribute to the man and the selectors who had the wisdom to bring him into the Ireland fold
John Taylor argues the world's best XVs players must be given a chance to play in the Olympics to increase the appeal of the game
The All Blacks' form is not a peaking issue, but Hansen must threaten to wield his axe, to demand improvement, Craig Dowd writes
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament