The All Blacks are at their best when they play attacking rugby

    Credit: PA Images

Credit: PA Images

All Blacks inside center David Havili believes his side are at their best when they go forward and play attacking rugby.

New Zealand are picking up the pieces from their third straight loss which saw the All Blacks drop to fifth in the world rankings – a new low for the proud rugby nation.

The All Blacks must play on the front foot

Havili is looking forward to this week’s Test at historic Ellis Park in Johannesburg and believes that if the All Blacks attack, they can show the best version of themselves.

“When we do that, we can show how good we are. But the Boks did a good job of starving us of the ball and putting us under pressure, so that’s what we’ll be working on this week,” Havili told the All Blacks’ official website.

“It is an exciting challenge for myself. I love playing at Ellis Park. I had the opportunity to come here and do it many times, so I’m looking forward to the opportunity.”

The center admits the All Blacks are disappointed with the latest result and their form, but the team is doing everything they can to right the ship.

“We’re definitely not happy with how we performed and we want to get it right this week. The effort was there, we’re trying hard. There’s just a few things that don’t stick and when they do, I know we will return to normal, he added.

Poor workmanship

In Test rugby, being clinical is key and Havili believes the All Blacks were a little off the mark with their execution of chances created.

“There is a lot in our game that creates these opportunities for us. But it’s about just taking those moments. We talked about nailing our stuff in that moment, and the few times we didn’t, we got it wrong, he continued.

“The Boks at home is a fantastic time for us. We are looking forward to another big challenge this week and we need to improve as well.”

Meanwhile, hooker Samisoni Takei’aho highlighted how limited opportunities are at Test level and agreed with Havili that the All Blacks were poor in execution while also looking forward to a massive clash at Ellis Park.

“We didn’t execute when we needed to and unfortunately for us, in Test football you only get one or two opportunities and if you miss the boat it can be the game,” he said.

“The boys tried but fell short in the evening. But credit to the Springboks, they played really well and we look forward to another week and playing at Ellis Park.

Takei’aho admitted he was delighted to find out he was starting in Nelspruit, with the other hookers in the squad, Dane Coles and Codie Taylor, playing a supporting role for the younger All Black.

“When I found out I was starting I was really excited, just for a couple of hours. I know it’s a job I had to do. Reality hit and I just had to go out and do my part to help the boys out,” he said .

“It gave me the confidence to go out there and give it my all.”

Improved line-out

The All Blacks’ line-out has come under heavy scrutiny in the last couple of games, but Takei’aho was up to his duties at the set-piece and praised the jumpers for doing the hard work.

“For me, it’s just my job to throw in the ball and I give credit to the other whores we throw in on our days off,” he said.

“It’s just putting the hard yards in behind the scenes, so when we get out to the field, we execute, but credit goes to the closers and people who call it because their job is to identify where the pitch is and make the trickster’s job a lot easier .”

READ MORE: Rugby Championship team of the week: Springboks dominate after impressive win over All Blacks

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