Hansen: All Blacks will learn from Wellington win


Steve Hansen was impressed with the manner in which New Zealand handled the pressure to beat Australia 29-9 and retain the Bledisloe Cup.

The All Blacks hammered the Wallabies 42-8 in the first game of the Rugby Championship in Sydney last weekend, a drubbing which prompted the critics to round on Michael Cheika and his side.

Israel Dagg scored two first-half tries, with Julian Savea and Sam Cane touching down after the break at Westpac Stadium on Saturday to ensure the world champions keep the Bledisloe Cup for a 14th consecutive year.

Two Bernard Foley penalties and one from debutant Reece Hodge was all Australia had to show for a more competitive performance in Wellington and New Zealand head coach Hansen was pleased with the way his side got the job done.

"On the scoreboard it looks like we've done it pretty easy, but I don't think anyone would say it was easy out there tonight," he said.

"The skill level of our guys was really good tonight, under extreme pressure at times, and at the moment that's probably where we've got a little bit of an edge. But I don't want to sit here and bag Australia, they're one of our best friends."

Hansen added: "You had to expect something was coming after last week [when] nothing came.

"They've copped a fair bit of criticism back home and they're proud people so they were going to come and bring whatever they had to bring and they did that and it was just a good old, hard game of footy.

"It was just a matter of us making sure that we kept our focus where we needed to be, which was playing our game. At times we drifted off and you'd expect that, this is a young side, we've lost 818 caps [with players having retired since the World Cup last year] so it's the type of game that'll make this team grow even better.

"They've been through it now and they know what it feels like and they know that if they concentrate on what we have to do, then we'll come out the other side of it OK. So there'll be a bit of trust and self-belief to come from it as well, so ideal game for us."