All Blacks put another long winning streak on the line

By Cameron McMillan

From one cauldron to the next. With the All Blacks currently holding a winning streak on home soil that now stretches to 39 tests, it's no surprise many grounds have gone years without witnessing an All Blacks defeat.

Saturday's 39-21 victory over Wales maintained the All Blacks' streak at Eden Park which goes back to 1994. Now it's onto Westpac Stadium, which wasn't even a twinkle in the Wellington Waterfront's eye back then but a home defeat in the capital is almost as rare.

The All Blacks have lost just twice at the Cake Tin in 19 tests. They were defeated in the first ever test at the ground by Australia courtesy of a late John Eales penalty in 2000.

Three years later, Jonny Wilkinson led an impressive England side to a 15-13 win. The All Blacks have gone undefeated in the capital since that England loss, a winning streak that sits at 14. During that time, they have beaten Australia, the Lions, South Africa, France, Ireland, Canada and Argentina. Wales could join that list on Saturday.

Wales have won at the capital before in 1987... against Ireland. They also played South Africa at the Stadium at the 2011 World Cup, losing the group clash. This will be their first clash against the All Blacks in Wellington, having played in Christchurch, Auckland, Hamilton and Dunedin on previous tours.

39 straight tests wins at home

The All Blacks are also looking to maintain their home winning streak (how many games), which goes back to the September 2009 defeat to the Springboks in Hamilton.

During the same timeframe, South Africa have lost eight tests at home, France 10, Australia 12 and England 13. Wales have lost 21. Papua New Guinea come close to equalling New Zealand's record, having lost just once at home since 2009 and winning eight.

Kieran Read, Jerome Kaino and Owen Franks are the only current All Blacks squad members who have tasted defeat on home soil.

10 straight wins

A victory on Saturday will also give the All Blacks 10-straight wins going back to last season's defeat to Australia in Sydney. It's an accomplishment they've already reached on nine previous occasions. England have done it five times, South Africa four and Australia three times. They are still a way from reaching their record of 17-straight wins, which they've done twice previously.

Crockett knows how to win

Wyatt Crockett now has a 96.73 per cent winning record with the All Blacks, having endured just one defeat in the 46 tests he has played. Crockett has also played in 18 straight tests without defeat, the highest active streak. England's Lawrence Dallaglio holds the record of playing in 28 straight test wins.

Like Crockett, Sam Cane has also suffered just one loss in his 32 test appearances for a winning percentage of 95.31 per cent. The same goes for Aaron Cruden - just one defeat in 38 tests - but, because of two draws, he has a slightly lower winning percentage of 94.73 per cent. Nine other players in the All Blacks squad have a winning percentage of more than 90.

Read tied with fellow skipper

Kieran Read has now played in 74 test wins, tied with Sean Fitzpatrick in 14th place on the all-time list. He's still 57 wins shy of Richie McCaw's 131 wins. Owen Franks has been in 69 wins. Read has also led the All Blacks in 10 wins to maintain a 100% win record as skipper.

Keep trying Owen

Speaking of Franks. He's now gone 79 tests without scoring a try. He's now four tryless test shy of tying the record held by Italian prop Salvatore Perugini. Aussie prop James Slipper, who played against England on Saturday, is hot on his heels having playing 75 tests without crossing the line.

All Black brother Ben managed to score twice in his 47 tests, one of which was on debut against Ireland.

Savea's try record

That was Savea's second try against Wales and he has now scored multiple tries against 11 of the 12 nations he has faced. The only side he hasn't scored against is South Africa, going six tests without a try.

- NZ Herald

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