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HIGHLIGHTS - Tuilagi inspires record New Zealand victory

01 December 2012

  • England romp to biggest ever victory over New Zealand
  • Barritt, Ashton and Tuilagi score in stunning second half showing

England 38 New Zealand 21

England ended New Zealand's 20-game unbeaten run with a sensational 38-21 victory over the world champions at Twickenham in the final QBE International

After leading 15-0 early in the second half courtesy of the boot of fly half Owen Farrell, England were pegged back by two converted tries inside four minutes from wing Julian Savea and No.8 Kieran Read.

But, led by the magnificent Manu Tuilagi, who provided two assists and scored a breakaway try, Stuart Lancaster’s team hit back with lightening efficiency in magnificent style with scores of their own to claim their first win over the All Blacks since 2003 and end a nine-match losing streak against New Zealand.

England started fast and dominated the early possession, while there were early signs of New Zealand frailty both in the scrum and from Dan Carter's boot as the fly half missed a pair of kickable penalties.

There was no such fallibility from England's 21-year-old Farrell as he knocked over three nerveless first-half penalties, all of them earned by England's power at the scrum and in the contact area, and a 'free-shot' drop goal with another penalty coming.

After the All Blacks had been kept scoreless in the first half for the first time since 1998, Farrell extended England's lead to 15 points a minute after the break following another scrum penalty, earnt by tight head Dan Cole.

The game was turned on its head for the first time from New Zealand's first real attack, as Carter put a penalty into the corner and as the ball was swept to the opposite flank, Savea beat Manu Tuilagi and Ben Youngs in the corner with a superb finish.

Carter had found his range and converted from the touchline and three minutes later repeated the dose after incessant New Zealand pressure ended with Kieran Read crashing over in the opposite corner.

England looked in danger of being swept aside but suddenly they found a second wind, and it was strong enough to blow the world champions away.

Farrell put Saracens team mate Brad Barritt through a hole in midfield and he exchanged passes with Tuilagi before scoring his first Test try in the corner, although Farrell failed to convert.

Manu Tuilagi makes a break

Photo: Getty Images

England needed to score again to maintain the momentum and they did almost immediately, as Tuilagi crashed through four tackles, including a hand-off to Carter, and put Chris Ashton in for his first Test try in ten matches. His joy, evidenced by a swan-dive finished, sent the Twickenham crowd into raptures.

Farrell's missed conversion was quickly atoned for by Tuilagi's interception try, as the centre picked off Read's pass with ease and trotted in for a try, which this time Farrell converted.

The All Blacks were in disarray by this stage and England took advantage with replacement Freddie Burns adding two penalties on his debut taking Lancaster’s side out of sight.

Replacement prop Mako Vunipola was sin-binned for not stopping after the referees' whistle in the closing stages and wonderful hands put Savea in to score his second, but by then Twickenham was in celebration mode.

The scale of England's achievement can be gauged by the fact that this was just their seventh win over New Zealand, while their margin of victory surpassed the 13-point record that dates back to 1936.

England vs New Zealand teams

England: Goode; Ashton, Tuilagi, Barritt, Brown; Farrell, B Youngs; Corbisiero, T Youngs, Cole, Launchbury, Parling, Wood, Robshaw, Morgan.

Replacements: Joseph for Tuilagi (66), Burns for Farrell (64), Care for B Youngs (68), Vunipola for Corbisiero (66), Paice for T Youngs (72), Wilson for Cole (72), Lawes for Launchbury (66), Haskell for Morgan (57).

New Zealand: Dagg; Jane, C Smith, Nonu, Savea; Carter, A Smith; Woodcock, Mealamu, O Franks, Retallick, S Whitelock, Messam, McCaw, Read.

Replacements: B Smith for Dagg (71), Cruden for Carter (64), Weepu for A Smith (64), Crockett for Woodcock (66), Coles for Mealamu (62), Faumuina for O Franks (52), Romano for Retallick (48), Vito for Messam (63).