Hansen: All Blacks not the finished article

Steve Hansen watched his All Blacks make a clean sweep of the autumn internationals but he insists his side are not firing on all cylinders just yet. [more]

Steve Hansen

Steve Hansen watched his All Blacks make a clean sweep of the autumn internationals but he insists his side are not firing on all cylinders just yet.

New Zealand will be focusing their attention on becoming the first nation to defend the World Cup next September but will have half an eye on the visit of the British & Irish Lions in 2017.

And having visited Europe last month, England, Wales and Scotland all fell by their sword after a summer in which they retained their Rugby Championship crown.

Nevertheless it has not been a perfect year for New Zealand – South Africa put an end to their 22-game unbeaten run in October – and Hansen believes he can squeeze more out of his players.

"I still think there's a good 20 per cent improvement [left]," Hansen told the New Zealand Herald.

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"We talk a lot about our skill execution and we've worked hard over the last three years on that.

“We're probably now moving to the stage of combining skill execution with making better decisions. If we do that well, we'll put teams under a lot of pressure.

“We're in good shape to have a crack at something no one has done before. What better challenge can you have?”

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