All Blacks power past Pumas

Cape Town - The All Blacks laid down an ominous marker when they defeated Argentina in their opening Rugby Championship clash in Christchurch on Friday.

The All Blacks won 39-18 after leading 18-6 at half-time.

The home side, bidding farewell to skipper Richie McCaw and Dan Carter who both played their final Tests on New Zealand soil, scored five tries through McCaw, centre Ma'a Nonu, wing Charles Piutau, No 8 Kieran Read and replacement hooker Codie Taylor. Carter was on target with four conversions and two penalties.

Argentina replied with a brace of tries by hooker Agustin Creevy and a conversion and two penalties by flyhalf Nicolas Sanchez.

The All Blacks picked up a bonus point for scoring four tries and took the early lead in the standings. Argentina left empty-handed.

The next assignment for the All Blacks will be a clash against the Springboks at Emirates Airline Park in Johannesburg on Saturday, July 25 (kick-off at 17:05), while Argentina welcome the Wallabies to the Estadio Malvinas Argentinas in Mendoza later that day (00:40 SA time).

Teams:

New Zealand

15 Israel Dagg, 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Ma'a Nonu, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Charles Piutau, 10 Daniel Carter, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Richie McCaw (captain), 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Keven Mealamu, 1 Tony Woodcock

Substitutes: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Jeremy Thrush, 20 Liam Messam, 21 Andy Ellis, 22 Colin Slade, 23 Ryan Crotty

Argentina

15 Joaquin Tuculet, 14 Horacio Agulla, 13 Marcelo Bosch, 12 Jeronimo De la Fuente, 11 Santiago Cordero, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Tomas Cubelli, 8 Facundo Isa, 7 Juan Martin Fernandez Lobbe, 6 Juan Manuel Leguizamon, 5 Guido Petti Pagadizabal, 4 Manuel Carizza, 3 Ramiro Herrera, 2 Agustin Creevy (captain), 1 Marcos Ayerza.

Substitutes: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Lucas Noguera, 18 Nahuel Chaparro Tetaz, 19 Benjamin Macome, 20 Javier Ortega Desio, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, 23 Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino

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