OPINION: At Eden Park, a capacity crowd - loving every minute of the Wallabies being brutally carved up by the All Blacks butchers - were involved in a Red Nose day for charity.
But for the Wallabies the test degenerated into a dreadful episode of Red Faces.
On a hideous night where the Wallabies discovered that they are rudderless without their captain, David Pocock, they suffered the indignity of being the first Australian team in 50 years not to score a point in a Bledisloe Cup test.
You have to go to back to September 8, 1962, to find the last time the Wallabies finished with a big fat zero, when beaten by New Zealand 3-0 in Dunedin.
So there goes the Bledisloe Cup for yet another year, and with it the intensity of doubts rise over whether Wallabies coach Robbie Deans will last that much longer in the position - because his long run of losses against the All Blacks is becoming overwhelming.
Making it that much more infuriating was that the Wallabies never looked as if they were ever going to break their duck.
The Wallabies couldn't get the ball and on the few occasions they did, nothing eventuated because they were so rattled by spending endless minutes trying to stop wave after wave of All Blacks chargers.
The All Blacks were only average last week, and picked up their act last night, and so the Wallabies, shackled by injuries and indecision, were soon asking for mercy. And without Pocock, the Wallabies breakdown work becomes even more pedestrian.
One early consolation was that the Wallabies first half effort was considerably better than a week ago.
That's hardly startling though, considering what bumbling fools they were in Sydney.
But this time, the Wallabies kept their error rate to a minimum before the break, showed greater application in midfield.
There was also a welcome dollop of aggression, with Scott Higginbotham wanting to rip the head off any All Blacks forward who came anywhere near him, and Sitaleki Timani carrying on from where he ended off last weekend by showing he at least wasn't intimidated by his opposites.
There were still enough glaring signs early on that the divide between the two teams was considerable.
After cleverly using Sonny Bill Williams and Ma'a Nonu as decoys in Sydney, the All Blacks centre pairing were far more involved this time around.
Williams in particular was used as the 'take-the-ball' up merchant, succeeding several times in offloading in the tackle, to ensure the All Blacks were able to enjoy the territorial battle by constantly playing on the front-foot.
And that's why the All Blacks took a 9-0 halftime lead.
The Wallabies scrambled well, but eventually perching too long on their own line was going to pay, prompting three relatively comfortable penalty goals attempts by Daniel Carter before the break.
Other Wallabies problems were an over-persistence in kicking, while again they were completely outclassed in the aerial battle, struggling with any high balls that went their way, and finding it near impossible to regather possession from restarts.
Then ill-discipline got them into trouble, with skipper Will Genia sent to the sinbin in the 28th minute for a silly slapdown of an All Blacks ball. Not exactly the greatest example to be provided by the new Wallabies skipper.
With it came more leakage of points. Then straight after the break, the Wallabies fell apart.
Even on the other side of the Tasman, you could hear all the television sets back in Australia being switched off in disgust when the All Blacks, relishing that the Wallabies simply could not get the ball off them, breezed away to a 22-nil lead by the 50th minute. It was sometimes horrible to watch.
And the Wallabies frustrations were there for all to see when after the All Blacks scored their only try they made a terrible hash of the restart.
The Australian forwards forgot to chase the kick by Berrick Barnes, and it floated across the sideline. Bartnes looked at his forwards in disbelief, and screamed in disgust.
Here was a team which suddenly realised that again they had lost the plot, and were so inferior to their opponents.
- Sydney Morning Herald
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