Roigard leads New Zealand to 71-3 thrashing of Namibia - RTHK
Temperature Humidity
News Archive Can search within past 12 months

Roigard leads New Zealand to 71-3 thrashing of Namibia

2023-09-16 HKT 08:41
Share this story facebook
  • Easy pickings for Cam Roigard as he bags his second try of the match. Photo: AFP
    Easy pickings for Cam Roigard as he bags his second try of the match. Photo: AFP
Live-wire scrum-half Cam Roigard had a field day to help New Zealand to an 11-try 71-3 thrashing of Namibia in the two teams' second World Cup match in Toulouse on Friday.

Roigard scored two tries and set up two more as fly-half Damian McKenzie bagged 26 points to kick start the All Blacks' tournament after an opening 27-13 loss to hosts France in Pool A.

That defeat brought to an end a run of 31 consecutive World Cup pool victories by the All Blacks, who also recorded their largest losing margin (14 points).

It also meant that the three-time champions will likely not top their pool, having finished first in all nine previous tournaments.

"It's a good feeling getting the win today, especially after last week's result," All Blacks captain Ardie Savea told Sky Sports.

"Just very proud of the men for having a good week of prep and then coming here and getting the win like we did.

"There were still a few areas where Namibia put us under pressure but we'll take that."

There was never any drama against Namibia, who came into the game at the Stadium of Toulouse still searching for a first-ever World Cup victory in their seventh consecutive tournament appearance, having opened with a 52-8 defeat by Italy - their 23rd straight loss.

And it was never going to happen against the All Blacks, who avoided a misfiring display like that of a much-changed France team against Uruguay on Thursday.

Going into the game, New Zealand had scored 20 tries in the two Tests between the nations, averaging one every eight minutes of play.

True to form, any resistance was short-lived as Roigard crossed after just 90 seconds after a break by Leicester Fainga'anuku.

Namibia spurned an early shot at goal to go for the corner, much to the delight of the sell-out crowd.

But possession was coughed up in contact and the All Blacks destroyed the African scrum on the line, Roigard spinning from the base for a simple try.

Tiaan Swanepoel got Namibia on the scoreboard with an 11th minute penalty before play was stopped for several minutes after Namibia centre Le Roux Malan sustained a nasty looking ankle injury in what appeared to be an innocuous tackle.

McKenzie skipped over for the All Blacks' third try after the re-start and Fainga'anuku's power from short range then proved too much as the winger bundled over the whitewash through three tackles to guarantee a bonus point.

As heavy rain swept into the stadium, Anton Lienert-Brown scored a neat try, collecting a McKenzie pass on the bounce, grubbing the ball past Divan Roussouw, then hacking ahead and touching down over the line.

Swanepoel was guilty of several kicking errors that gifted possession back to New Zealand and from one such mistake McKenzie grabbed his second after Roigard broke clear from a scrum to make it 38-3 at half-time.

There was a glut of tries in the second period as Namibia tired.

Ethan de Groot crossed just seconds after coming on with his first touch, before Dalton Papali'i sliced through and David Havili was played in by the influential Roigard.

Namibia skipper Johan Deysel spilled the ball to end a rare period of attack from his side before Caleb Clarke and Rieko Ioane crossed for New Zealand.

De Groot was yellow carded for a no-arms tackle attempt, later upgraded to red by the bunker review system, in the only blip for New Zealand, for whom lock Sam Whitelock drew level with Richie McCaw on 148 Test appearances. (AFP)

Roigard leads New Zealand to 71-3 thrashing of Namibia