The Kiwis annihilated the Scotland team in Christchurch on Saturday night 74-6 with the largest deficit so far this Rugby League World Cup.
Kiwis start fast and reckless
David Kidwell stayed true to his word and made sure his Kiwi squad stuck to playing ‘Kiwi style’ footy which payed off in their first battle against Samoa. Although it is a tactic that works for the team, they needed more composure in the early stages of the first half until they were able to establish themselves and command control of the game. Their attacking style came off against Scotland but the team will need to be more clinical and accurate when playing more competitive teams like Australia.
Winning combination of Te Maire Martin and Shaun Johnson
The Cowboys Te Maire Martin debuted in his first Kiwis test match on Saturday alongside the Warriors main attacking weapon Shaun Johnson. The roommates combined perfectly together as the rookie five-eighth helped Johnson earn the title of New Zealand’s highest all-time point scorer, overtaking former captain Matthew Ridge’s 168 points to reach 175 in just his 22nd test outing. Despite missing multiple goals, Johnson still managed to score 22 points with a try, and 9 successful goals.
Scotland admitted defeat
As the game gradually came to a close, Scotland looked as though they wanted to walk off the field and admit defeat before the final whistle. The Kiwis were in a different league to the Scots and after the score crept into the 40’s they stopped putting up a chase when the men in black and white ran away with the ball time and time again. Even if you were a Kiwi supporter on the night, everyone felt a bit sorry for the bruised and battered team who gave their everything and still got absolutely thrashed by the team that made them look like boys playing men.
Scotland’s one and only try
With 10 minutes of the game remaining and the scoreboard sitting at 68-0 to the Kiwis, no one can blame them for becoming complacent – and that is exactly what they did. In the 71st minute, Oscar Thomas saved his team from a scoreless defeat and secured a try purely due to lazy defense from the Kiwis on the line. Although there was no coming back for the Scotland side, it was disappointing the Kiwis allowed their defensive line to be breached, as a 0 on the scoreboard would have been pleasing for Kidwell. If they are going to be contenders to win the world cup they need to play with dedication and passion for the full 80. Even though it is impressive and exciting to watch the attacking style the Kiwis are producing, we all know it will be a strong defensive effort that will bring the cup home.
New Zealand 74
Tries: Kenneath Bromwich, Jason Nightingale (2), Joseph Tapine, Te Maire martin (3), Peta Hiku (3), Russell Packer, Dean Whare, Shaun Johnson, Elijah Taylor
Goals: Shaun Johnson (9)
Tries: Oscar Thomas
Goals: Danny Addy