New Zealand’s All Blacks have successfully clinched a place in the Rugby World Cup final after a commanding seven-try victory over Argentina at Stade de France, setting the stage for an intense showdown next Saturday.
While Argentina initially took the lead with an early Emiliano Boffelli penalty, the All Blacks swiftly gained control with two quickfire tries from Will Jordan and Jordie Barrett within five minutes.
Before the end of the first half, Shannon Frizell secured a crucial third try, followed by Aaron Smith’s impressive individual effort early in the second half, extending their lead even further.
Frizell’s second try and Jordan’s hat-trick, equalling the legendary records of Jonah Lomu (1999), Bryan Habana (2007), and Julian Savea (2015) for the most tries in a single Rugby World Cup, solidified the All Blacks’ place in the record books with their fifth final appearance.
Jordie Barrett’s outstanding defensive performance earned him the title of Mastercard Player of the Match. “It’s an incredible feeling,” he expressed. “These moments are truly special.”
New Zealand captain Sam Cane praised the team’s effort, stating, “Our forwards were exceptional. Our set-piece dominance and ability to capitalize on penalties kept the pressure on the Argentinians throughout the match.”
Meanwhile, Argentina captain Julián Montoya conceded his team’s defeat, acknowledging, “They were superior today. We made too many errors and didn’t perform up to our potential. We need to reflect on our performance.”
Despite the loss, New Zealand head coach Ian Foster credited Argentina’s early pressure, admitting, “They came at us with everything they had. We had to stay composed and seize our opportunities. Those crucial eight points just before halftime gave us the edge we needed.”
Looking forward, New Zealand will face either South Africa or England in the semi-final, eager to redeem their loss from four years ago. “We’re not done yet,” Barrett affirmed.
Argentina head coach Michael Cheika emphasized his team’s determination to end the tournament on a high note, stating, “We aim to leave with a medal. The upcoming Bronze final is crucial for us. It’s going to be tough to bounce back from this defeat, but we’ll give it our all.”