Rumours of the All Blacks demise have run rampant for years, but have yet to come to fruition.
Those rumours may indeed become the truth at some point, at which time those responsible can claim clairvoyance.
The Coach of Argentina is one to place New Zealand in his crosshairs, with claims that the world’s best international rugby team isbeatable.
Coach Mario Ledesma offered his observation not long after New Zealand had posted a 35 – 17 win in Buenos Aires Saturday past to secure a sixth Rugby Championship title.
Part of Ledesma’s conviction came, no doubt, from South Africa beating the All Blacks 36 – 34, in Wellington of all places, and at least one other part had to come from the concept that hope springboks eternal, or there is no reason to carry on.
Remarks by Ledesma published by AFP said, in part, “I thought the All Blacks were not very clinical. They dropped the ball a lot and lost a lot of lineouts.They are not untouchables.”
He went on to admit that despite all the New Zealand deficiencies to which he alluded, his side was unable to captitalise.
In the actual game, New Zealand was up 21 – 3 at the break. Things were a bit more even in the second half, but if there is any observation we would offer, it is that the All Blacks will sometimes take their feet off the accelerator when they gain a clear advantage and they think they are invulnerable to a comeback by the other side.
New Zealand is seven points clear of South Africa, 13 between them and Argentina and 16 more than Australia, so for the time being at least, the All Blacks look about as untouchable as can be as the participating nations prepare for the final Championship fixtures Saturday next.
Heaven forbid they Pumas fail to get by the Wallabies in Salta, or Ledesma will have to find another way to sledge New Zealand.