The Bledisloe Cup may be wrapped up for another year, but the All Blacks will be keen to continue to pile on the points when they host Argentina in Nelson this Saturday. Beauden Barrett is in untouchable form and the All Blacks will be eager to keep entertaining their home fans with their trademark attacking style of rugby.
New Zealand’s dynamic fly-half notched up an historic Bledisloe record last month in Auckland, storming to an individual haul of 30 points, which included four tries and five conversions. Barrett’s performance singlehandedly sealed the Bledisloe Cup for New Zealand for a 16th consecutive year, while his haul of 30 points at Eden Park now sits alongside Frenchman Didier Camberabero’s 30 points scored against Zimbabwe at the same ground in the 1987 World Cup. When just looking at performances against Tier 1 nations, Barrett scored the most points by a New Zealand player in a single game this century. Across all New Zealand players in history, Barrett sits just behind Andrew Mehrtens and Carlos Spencer (33) while Tony Brown still sits atop the list with 36 points.
After a two-week break Barrett will be raring to go when the All Blacks host Argentina this weekend. Barrett has won 10 from 10 games against Argentina, notching up 66 points in that time. Although Argentina impressed many with a win over South Africa last month, New Zealand have shown no mercy against Los Pumas in their most recent encounters, averaging 42 points per match in their last four encounters. While the All Blacks have never played an international test at Trafalgar Park, the ground is no stranger to try-fests, with a combined total of 197 points scored across just three games at the ground during the 2011 Rugby World Cup. Argentina have been demoralised by a sharp-shooting All Black in the past, with Carlos Spencer holding the record for most points against Los Pumas in a single game; come Saturday, they will be looking to keep New Zealand’s newest points-machine Beauden Barrett at bay.