Super Rugby Aotearoa team of the week: Ten All Blacks selected from round three

There were a host of standout performances as Super Rugby Aotearoa produced another round of gripping matches.

The Blues made it three wins from three with a nail-biting victory over the Highlanders at Eden Park while the Crusaders maintained their 100 per cent start by beating the winless Chiefs in Christchurch.

Here’s out best XV from round three…


15. Damian McKenzie (Chiefs)

Damian McKenzie is closed down by All Blacks team-mate Jack Goodhue[contfnewc] [contfnewc] Damian McKenzie is closed down by All Blacks team-mate Jack Goodhue[contfnewc] [contfnewc]

McKenzie was the outstanding Chief on show in Christchurch, displaying excellent handling and footwork in slick conditions.

The miscalculation in the air which led to the Crusaders’ first try was the one negative from a dazzling display where he asked serious questions of the home defence.

McKenzie was superb under the high ball and a constant threat with ball in hand, beating four defenders and making 61 metres, while he was successful with three of his four shots at goal.

Two moments of opportunism from the All Black resulted in two tries for his full-back. Reece beat McKenzie in the air in the lead-up to the opening try, tearing downfield and drawing the last two defenders before putting Will Jordan over.

The Fiji-born wing was busy throughout and looked to capitalise on Chiefs’ handling errors, while his quickly-taken lineout sent Jordan over for the Crusaders’ crucial second try.

13. Jack Goodhue (Crusaders)

Goodhue was given little opportunity to show his quality in attack but made up for that with a supreme defensive performance.

The centre made 13 tackles, the most of any Crusaders back, and his line speed forced the Chiefs down cul-de-sacs.

12. Anton Lienert-Brown (Chiefs)

Lienert-Brown shipped a huge tackle from Cullen Grace during the first half but never shirked his defensive duties, which allowed Aaron Cruden and McKenzie to prosper.

He made seven tackles, missing none, while also showing some deft touches in attack.

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