The AllBlacks maintained their dominance over the Wallabies with a workman-like performance to win Bledisloe 3 in Tokyo 37-20.
The Wallabies trailed by just seven points at the main break but a second half clinic from the world’s number one side helped push the margin out by full-time.
Australia started brightly in Yokohama as Israel Folau scythed through to put the Wallabies on the attack but New Zealand soon clicked into gear as they dominated possession and territory throughout the half.
It eventually wore Australia down as Liam Squire found himself in space to open the score for New Zealand.
Kurtley Beale nailed a long penalty goal to narrow the margin but it didn’t last long as Beauden Barrett kicked one of his own before Kieran Read barged over from a scrum on Australia’s line to make the score 3-17 nearing half-time.
A brilliant piece of play off the ensuing kick-off earned Australia possession though and they were quick to strike as Sefa Naivalu scored in the corner to pull the Wallabies back into the contest at the main break.
The Wallabies took the game to New Zealand early in the second half and a Bernard Foley penalty goal after a period of sustained pressure brought the margin back to just four points with 30 minutes left to play.
A slick backline move from New Zealand gave them some breathing space with just over 20 minutes remaining, as Barrett switched the point of attack only to receive the ball back from teammate Rieko Ioane to sprint down the left wing for his five-pointer.
A yellow card to replacement hooker Tolu Latu made Australia’s task a difficult one and New Zealand were quick to capitalise thanks to an intercept try for winger Ben Smith.
With the margin pushing out to 20 points, Australia launched a series of attacks on New Zealand’s line and Israel Folau stepped his way through the broken defence to score under the posts with five minutes to go.
It wasn’t to be for the Wallabies though, as Rieko Ioane caught them on the counter-attack to seal a 17-point win for the defending World Cup champions.
Tries: Squire, Read, B Barrett, B Smith, Ioane
Cons: B Barrett 3
Pens: B Barrett 2
Tries: Naivalu, Folau
Cons: Foley 2
Pens: Beale, Foley
Yellow Card: Latu
New Zealand: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Ben Smith, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Rieko Ioane, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Kieran Read (c), 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Liam Squire, 5 Scott Barrett, 4 Sam Whitelock, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody
Replacements: 16 Nathan Harris, 17 Karl Tu’inukuafe, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Brodie Retallick, 20 Matt Todd, 21 Aaron Smith, 22 Richie Mo’unga, 23 Anton Lienert-Brown
Australia: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Sefa Naivalu, 13 Israel Folau, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Marika Koroibete, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Will Genia, 8 David Pocock, 7 Michael Hooper (c), 6 Ned Hanigan, 5 Rob Simmons, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Faingaa, 1 Scott Sio
Replacements: 16 Tolu Latu, 17 Sekope Kepu, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Rory Arnold, 20 Jack Dempsey, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Samu Kerevi, 23 Tom Banks
Referee: Romain Poite (France)
Assistant referees: Marius van der Westhuizen (South Africa), Rasta Rasivhenge (South Africa)
Television match official: Marius Jonker (South Africa