Mon, Nov 21, 2005 - Page 20 News List

All Blacks turn in another solid win

RUGBY INTERNATIONALS New Zealand flyhalf Daniel Carter scored 13 points and set up both tries against England as Australia secured a big victory over Ireland


New Zealand's Setiveni Sivivatu, right, tackles England's Ben Cohen during their match at Twickenham in London on Saturday.


New Zealand beat England 23-19 to move within one game of a grand slam, while Australia broke its seven-match losing streak with a 30-14 win over Ireland in rugby union internationals on Saturday.

South Africa made it three wins for Southern Hemisphere sides when it beat Wales 33-16 at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.

At Twickenham, New Zealand flyhalf Daniel Carter scored 13 points and set up both tries. But England's performance in the final 20 minutes, when it pressured New Zealand into conceding penalties that resulted in three of its players being sin-binned, almost brought the World Cup champion an unlikely victory.

"Everyone is devastated," England captain Martin Corry said. "We've lost a game at Twickenham. It should hurt like hell and it does. We got ourselves in a great position to win the game but couldn't quite close it out. That final score just eluded us and we're tremendously disappointed and frustrated."

Carter twice glided into holes inside England's quarter and New Zealand scored both times as a direct result, through captain and center Tana Umaga and hooker Keven Mealamu in each half.

"We expected this today," Umaga said. "We saw it as our hardest game of the tour and of the whole season. But we'll take a win any way we can get it. We showed great heart and belief and dug our toes in."

England's sole try was scored by captain and No. 8 Martin Corry, with flyhalf Charlie Hodgson contributing 14 points in front of the 62,000-capacity crowd at Twickenham.

New Zealand just needs a win over Scotland on Nov. 26 at Murrayfield to secure its first grand slam in the British Isles since 1978. The All Blacks have crushed Six Nations champ Wales 41-3 and Ireland 45-7, and face a Scotland side still gelling under new manager Frank Hadden.

In other results Saturday, Vincent Clerc scored two tries to help France beat Tonga 43-8 in Toulouse, Argentina beat Italy 39-22 in Genoa, Romania beat Canada 22-20 in Bucharest, and Fiji beat Portugal 26-17 in Lisbon.

Australia was on the verge of recording its worst sequence of results since losing 11 in a row from 1936-47. It won at Lansdowne Road with two tries from Drew Mitchell and another from Chris Latham. Mat Rogers kicked three conversions and three penalties.

"If you keep on working hard, and you keep on doing the small things, it's going to turn around and today was the day," Australia coach Eddie Jones said.

Ireland took a 6-3 lead after an error-strewn first half in which it lost a key member of the lineout when veteran lock Malcolm O'Kelly was taken off on a stretcher with his neck in a brace after a tackle by Lote Tuqiri.

Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan said O'Kelly had been knocked out, but regained consciousness in hospital. He said the incident was "just an unfortunate collision."

Ireland scored a consolation try with five minutes remaining through Shane Horgan. Ronan O'Gara kicked two penalties and his replacement, David Humphreys, scored one penalty but missed the conversion.

Australia lost 26-16 to England last Saturday. That defeat by the Wallabies equaled their worst losing streak since 1969.

In Cardiff, Bryan Habana scored two tries and set up another to help South Africa beat Six Nations champion Wales. The margin would have been more convincing had fullback Percy Montgomery not missed four of his seven shots at goal.

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