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The bullies became the bullied in Yokohama. England exposed All Black frailties we didn’t even know were there to produce one of the greatest World Cup performances and ensure there will be no three-peat.
With Maro Itoje imperious, Eddie Jones’ men delivered in every department. They out-muscled the now-former world champions, they were the cleverer team and they dictated the game from their blistering opening moments, denying New Zealand any oxygen by attacking them at the lineout and at the breakdown where Sam Underhill and Tom Curry were sensational.
Four years after exiting at the pool stages, the men in white are 80 minutes away from a second World Cup. Few would bet against them completing the job.
South Africa or Wales will need something special if they are to stop the men in white from ending their 16 year wait
After ripping Ireland to shreds, the All Blacks barely got a chance to unleash their attacking game, while they struggled to make any of the telling hits they managed a week ago in Tokyo.
In the end, they were reduced to errors and ill-discipline.
It started before kick-off as England pointedly surrounded the Haka and followed it up with an overwhelming opening salvo, similar to what they produced against Ireland in the Six Nations.
It was fast, it was furious and it had the world champions all at sea.
Elliott Daly stepped outside Richie Mo’unga to get the ball rolling, sending Anthony Watson up the right and they then they flashed the ball wide to stretch the All Blacks.
Superb hands from Kyle Sinckler kept them moving forward and eventually it was Manu Tuilagi who stepped inside the cover a la Aaron Smith last week to score.
Owen Farrell converted and England looked to double down, with George Ford stripping Nepu Laulala of possession before Elliott Daly chipped ahead for
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