The All Blacks are at their best when playing attacking rugby


All Blacks center David Havili believes his side are at their best when they are going forward and playing attacking rugby.

New Zealand is picking up the pieces from their third consecutive loss resulting in the All Blacks falling to fifth in the world rankings – a new low for the proud rugby nation.

The All Blacks need to play on the front foot

Havili is looking forward to this week’s Test at the historic Ellis Park in Johannesburg and believes if the All Blacks are attacking, they can show their best version.

“Once we do that, we can show how good we are. But the Boks did a great job of starving us of the ball and putting us under pressure, so that’s what we’ll be working on this week,” Havili told the All Blacks Official Website.

“It’s an exciting challenge for myself. I love playing at Ellis Park. I had the opportunity to come here and do it a lot of times so I’m looking forward to the opportunity,” he said.

The center admits the All Blacks are disappointed with the result and the run of form, but the team is doing everything they can to right the ship.

“We’re definitely not happy with how we performed and we want to make it right this week. The effort was there, we’re trying bloody hard. It’s just a few things that aren’t sticking, and when they do, I know we’ll get back to normal.”

Poor execution

In Test rugby, being clinical is key, and Havili believes the All Blacks were slightly off the mark with their execution of chances created.

“There is a lot in our game that is creating those opportunities for us. But, it is about just taking those moments. We spoke about nailing our stuff in that moment and the few times where we didn’t, we got it wrong.

“The Boks at home is an awesome time for us. We’re looking forward to another big challenge this week, and we’ve got to get better as well,” he said.

Hooker Samisoni Takei’aho highlighted how limited opportunities are at Test level and agreed with Havili that the All Blacks were poor with execution whilst also looking ahead to a massive clash at Ellis Park.

“We didn’t execute when we needed to and, unfortunately for us, in Test footy you only get one or two opportunities and if you miss the boat then that could be the game,” he told the All Blacks Official Website.

“The boys tried their hearts out but came up short on the night. But credit to the Springboks, they played really well and we’re looking forward to another week and to play at Ellis Park.”

Takei’aho was delighted to find out he was starting, and the other hookers in the squad, Dane Coles and Codie Taylor, played a supporting role for the younger All Black.

“When I found out I was starting I was really excited, just for a couple of hours. I know there’s a job I had to do. Reality kicked in and I just had to go out and do my bit to help the boys out.”

“That gave me the confidence to go out there and give it everything.”

Improved line-out

The All Blacks line-out has been under tremendous scrutiny over the last couple of games, but Takei’aho nailed his duties in the set-piece and commended his jumpers for doing the hard work.

“For me it’s just my job to throw in the ball and I give credit to the other hookers we do throw-ins on our days off. It’s just putting the hard yards in behind the scenes so when we come out to the field we execute but credit should go to the locks and people calling it because their job is to identify where the space is and make the hooker’s job a lot easier, he said.

READ MORE: Rugby Championship Team of the Week: Springboks dominate after impressive victory over the All Blacks

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