The All Blacks continue to sweep all before them. Perhaps only the Lions can maul this juggernaut.

Another devastating performance by the All Blacks after their long-haul trip from Argentina to South Africa via Brazil must have the rest of the rugby world looking on with a mixture of awe and trepidation.

With tests against Australia, Ireland (twice), Italy and France to come this year, it's worth asking the question: when will their dominance end?

The Lions will arrive in the middle of next year with a strong squad and plenty of self-belief. But, with their unprecedented schedule including three tests and five matches against New Zealand's Super Rugby teams plus one against the New Zealand Maori, will they fare much better? Maybe the best other nations can hope for is that the All Blacks somehow contrive to beat themselves.

The Springboks must have privately hoped the Aaron Smith affair and the distractions it provided to players and management alike would have opened the door slightly wider to their first win over the All Blacks since 2014, but it was quickly slammed in their face at the end of the first half when the visitors lifted the pace and intensity to a level they could never match.


The fact the All Blacks went for a lineout drive, from which Brodie Retallick scored a disallowed try, at the end of the first half with the score 12-9 showed they knew they had the Boks on the rack.

Especially worrying for other rugby nations must be the fact that for all of the All Blacks' skills, pace, fitness, mental strength and game awareness, there are other players putting pressure on the incumbents, so the team sail on regardless of injuries or misconduct issues.

TJ Perenara is taking his chance with Smith out of the picture for the moment. Beauden Barrett, like Perenara, has gone to a new level since leading the Hurricanes to their maiden championship. Ryan Crotty and Anton Lienert-Brown are building a fine combination in the midfield, with the 21-year-old Lienert-Brown probably favourite to start in the No13 jersey against the Wallabies at Eden Park in a fortnight. Israel Dagg is thriving on the right wing. Outside yesterday's match-day 23, Luke Romano, Patrick Tuipulotu, Elliot Dixon, Aaron Cruden, Damian McKenzie, Malakai Fekitoa, Julian Savea and others are waiting for their opportunities.

Leading it all is a coaching group as talented and thorough as any to lead the All Blacks.

As Steve Hansen said after his side ran in nine tries past the Boks at Kings Park, Ian Foster and Wayne Smith are fine coaches in their own right.

Add forwards coach Mike Cron to the mix, and Hansen's overarching leadership and man-management, and it's a recipe for continued success.

They won't say it publicly, but the All Blacks will be looking for a similarly dominant performance against the Wallabies next following a fair bit of bad blood between the two teams.

If the same standards are applied to the All Blacks' preparations over the next fortnight, it's difficult to see Australia getting within 25 points of this team.

Ruling the world

• The three-time world champion All Blacks completed the most dominant campaign of any team in the history of the Rugby Championship, securing a bonus point in each of their six wins.

• The ABs finish the championship having accumulated 38 tries to their opponents' five.

• They scored 262 points to 84.