One of the aspects of the All Blacks' game becoming increasingly apparent is how they are promoting the strengths of their players.

Hooker Dane Coles is playing like an outside back in those wide channels and he responded with three try assists against the Boks in Christchurch on Saturday night. There were instances when Kieran Read roamed wider, too, with his running and offloading game.

They are playing with intelligence and at an extremely high tempo which is too difficult for the opposition to stay with.

I liked their attack formation off the scrum attack. They were flat and prepared to go hard at the gain line. South Africa had no idea how to cope with it. With the All Blacks' quick ball, and Aaron Smith's bullet-like pass, the opposition don't have time to react.


Compare that with the alignment of the Springboks backs on attack. They were so deep and I found that very confusing. As defenders, you have so much more time to adjust and adapt when the opposition attacks from deep behind the advantage line. All the All Blacks had to do was rush up, cut down their space, and knock them over.

There were some encouraging signs for the Boks, particularly around how their pack played, but I still don't think they have got their heads around how they want to play and there was little synergy between forwards and backs. Faf de Klerk and Elton Jantjies are good players, but look at how flat Aaron Smith's passes are to his first receivers - most often Beauden Barrett - and compare that to de Klerk's passing. That is where a lot of South Africa's problems stemmed from.

Bryan Habana's try was a piece of genius with the angle of his run and his speed on to the ball, but again he was very deep there and that's an indication of how South Africa want to play. They looked good when they did flatten up.

When Jantjies or locks Pieter-Steph du Toit and Eben Etzebeth got in behind the All Blacks, they looked promising. On the whole, their pack was good but apart from Habana, their backline didn't really deliver.

Another reason why the All Blacks are out on their own is their kicking game. They kick with thought and accuracy; to put pressure on the opposition and to get the ball back. Statistically, they kick more than any other international team, but they do it in a positive manner. We saw evidence of that on Saturday night with chips, crossfield kicks and bombs all putting South Africa under massive pressure.

In contrast, South Africa's kicking game was poor.

For the All Blacks, Aaron Smith, Beauden Barrett, Ben Smith and Israel Dagg can kick brilliantly. It's another area where this team are excelling.