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Rugby Championship
All Blacks unfazed by draw
August 17, 2014
Australia 12-12 New Zealand (video available in Australia only)

Coach Steve Hansen was philosophical about New Zealand letting slip a golden opportunity to close out a record-equalling 18th straight Test win in the All Blacks' 12-12 draw with the Wallabies on Saturday night. The All Blacks had been unbeaten since losing to England at Twickenham on their 2012 spring tour.

The world champions were bidding to match the 18 straight Test victories by their Kiwi countrymen from 1965-69 and South Africa's 1997-98 outfit in the Bledisloe Cup and Rugby Championship opener in Sydney.

All Blacks held in Wallabies opener
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Instead, the All Blacks failed to convert a 9-3 half-time advantage at ANZ Stadium in the first tryless Test in Sydney since 1979.

"The record has been talked about a lot by a lot of people," Hansen said. "But, for us, the record is the outcome of winning games and how do we feel about not winning the game? Gutted - because we came here to win. Wherever we go we go, we go there to win. You saw that in the last minute of the game.

"We were defending, defending, defending, we get a penalty and the game's over on the clock and yet we didn't want to kick it out. I applaud that within the team because they've got the courage to want to play and win and be better than just a draw. That's what makes you proud as a coach, when you've got a group that'll show that much ticker."

The All Blacks' task was made all the more challenging by yellow cards to prop Wyatt Crockett in the first half and replacement fly-half Beauden Barrett 11 minutes from fulltime.

"The first one was pretty clear cut," Hansen conceded. "Crocky got offside, then got offside again so he went to the naughty boy's chair. The second one, I'm not sure about. I'm going to have to talk to someone who understands the rules better than me.

"I thought it was just a tackle and he came back and the ball wasn't in the tackle area; it had come away from the tackle area so there's no offside zone. It's irrelevant really ... we're not whingeing about it."

Of more concern for Hansen were injuries to centre Ma'a Nonu and blindside flanker Jerome Kaino, two of New Zealand's most destructive players.

"Ma'a looks like he's got a sore shoulder," Hansen said. "But we won't know until the morning, until everyone wakes up and cools down and sees what the extent is. [Kaino] has got a sore elbow so he's in the same boat."

The All Blacks had little left to give after their battle with the Wallabies © Getty Images
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