For the All Blacks, and in particular Julian Savea, a tougher test awaits in Johannesburg next Sunday, but the team, and the enormous wing, are entitled to feel pleased with the manner in which they dispatched Argentina at La Plata yesterday to win the Rugby Championship.

Savea's try, a Jonah Lomu-like effort in which he bumped off a defender when squeezed against the left touchline, then swatted two more away to score minus his left boot, brought his tally to 27 tries in 27 tests.

Watch: All Blacks win Championship

The All Blacks have won the Rugby Championship with a test to spare, a bonus-point victory over Argentina at La Plata today in which Julian Savea again proved he is one of the deadliest backs in the world sealing their dominance.Video courtesy of; Savea scored a try, had one ruled out, and provided one for replacement halfback TJ Perenara as the All Blacks capitalised on a dominant first half to once again roll over the top of the Pumas at the Ciudad Estadio de La Plata near Buenos Aires.

He also had a try ruled out when getting slightly ahead of Beauden Barrett's chip kick, and provided an offload under considerable pressure to present TJ Perenara his first test try.


A curiosity of Savea's incredible strike-rate is that just like Lomu he has so far failed to score one against the Springboks, although he will get an opportunity at Ellis Park, and on this form must be favoured to complete the set. The All Blacks' Championship victory renders the test against their old rivals and the No 2 side in the world a dead rubber, but they will want to finish with a flourish.

They will also enjoy the prospect of once again playing on a dry ground and getting their outside backs into the equation because in Savea, Israel Dagg and Ben Smith they have three of the best in the world.

Fullback Dagg and right wing Smith combined brilliantly in the first half as the All Blacks stretched an Argentine outside defence they couldn't test to their liking in the drizzle of Napier three weeks ago.

Smith was the first beneficiary when Dagg, capitalising on an off-the-top lineout win, stretched his legs and passed inside to Smith, who returned the favour a short time later with a no-look outside pass after a quick counter-attack from halfway which left the home side chasing ghosts.

The two tries all but shut the door on the test, with Savea's exploits in the second half helping the All Blacks to their bonus point and third consecutive title.

A satisfied Steve Hansen said of his team's mindset: "We wanted to win the game first and foremost. If you go in there with an attitude of you're going to score four tries, you're going in with the wrong attitude. These guys, the Pumas, are better than that and you've got to respect them."

There will be collateral damage to assess for the All Blacks. Lock Brodie Retallick went off for a concussion test in the second half and didn't return; Hansen saying afterwards more would be known about his condition in time. Prop Wyatt Crockett was an early casualty when he was cut under his right eye in the first collision and was replaced permanently by Joe Moody in the second half.

On the plus side, Sam Whitelock showed no concern for his physical wellbeing after returning from a rib injury, and Richie McCaw was another standout, even going on a scything run in the second half. Malakai Fekitoa and Keven Mealamu were two more success stories, the second-five looking at home in an unfamiliar position and the veteran hooker turning back the years with an energetic, and accurate, performance.

All Blacks 34 (Ben Smith, Israel Dagg, Julian Savea, TJ Perenara tries; Beauden Barrett 4 cons, 2 pens)

Argentina 13 (Horacio Agulla try; Nicolas Sanchez con, 2 pens). HT: 20-6