The New Zealand All Blacks booked a place in a record 5th Rugby World Cup final with a commanding 44-6 semi-final victory over Argentina on Saturday. Winger Will Jordan’s hat trick led a clinical attacking display as the All Blacks scored seven tries to nil.
In rainy conditions, New Zealand’s defense dominated early before launching a ruthless counterattack. Jordan, Jordie Barrett and Shannon Frizell crossed for first-half tries to lead 26-6 at the break, despite Argentina enjoying more possession.
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The All Blacks refused to let up after halftime. Scrum-half Aaron Smith added a try before the forwards rampaged for further scores. Jordan completed his treble late on to draw level as the World Cup’s top try scorer.
The three-time champion All Blacks became the first team to reach 5 World Cup finals with the comprehensive win. Player of the match Jordie Barrett said the performance marked “new territory” for this group.
Argentina competed initially but lacked attacking precision. Handling errors and ill-discipline proved costly as they leaked 7 tries. The 38-point margin fell just short of New Zealand’s record 43-point semi-final win over Wales in 1987.
The All Blacks were clinical throughout, blending power up front with slick backline attacks. Their almost flawless display sets a formidable marker before the final against either England or South Africa.
After conquering Ireland last week, New Zealand showed supreme big-match temperament. Their form makes them firm favorites to lift the Webb Ellis Cup again on October 28.