Thursday, November 29, 2012

Hansen issues England warning

New Zealand have looked imperious on their tour of the northern hemisphere so far and when head coach Steve Hansen says his side must improve further, that should get alarm bells ringing for members of the England camp.
The All Blacks have been dominant in their performances in Europe, with Scotland, Italy and Wales all being powerless to stop the Kiwi machine.
New Zealand did not even have to be at their best to see off Wales 33-10 in Cardiff on Saturday, and that’s arguably the best side in the northern hemisphere in the last 18 months, after a successful World Cup and winning the Six Nations Grand Slam.
Next up for the All Blacks they will take on an England side who have lost their last two games narrowly to both Australia and South Africa in hard-fought encounters at the Home of Rugby.
Hansen should fancy his side’s chances but he knows that England will not go down easily at Twickenham, as they hope to end their Autumn International Series on a high before the Six Nations campaign starts with a clash against Scotland on February 2.
The New Zealand boss said: "We put them under a lot of pressure but then of course got Cory (Jane) in the sin-bin (for a deliberate knock-on) and we lost our control and shape for some time - which allowed them to come running back at us.
"But we can't afford to get ahead of ourselves and if we don't prepare in genuine fashion England will give us a thumping next week. However, we'll enjoy this success and start again on Monday."
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