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Steve Hansen’s All Blacks teed up a World Cup semi-final against England next weekend and threw down the gauntlet to Eddie Jones and his side with a demolition of the Irish.
Hansen may have missed out at the racetrack on Saturday in Australia but it looks like he is backing a winner with his team in the Far East.
They scored seven tries with scrum-half Aaron Smith bagging two to send Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt into potentially temporary international retirement in the worst way possible.
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Ireland were poor and hardly fired a shot in anger but it is hard to see many teams living with this All Black side if they are in the mood.
Over to you Eddie.
Hansen is part-owner of a racehorse called Nature Strip who ran in the Everest, a £7million race at Royal Randwick in Sydney, just hours before kick-off here.
Nature Strip, a 20-1 chance, hit the front in his race before fading to finish fourth. There was no possibility of Hansen’s charges in Japan doing likewise and it is odds-on he will be in the winners’ enclosure when the final is played in Yokohama on 2 November.
There was some breath-taking skill from wing Sevu
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