All Blacks A Dominating Force In World Rugby
The All Blacks and the Springboks recently made for one of the biggest shows of the Rugby Championship in front of a crowd of 50,000 people at the iconic Newlands in Cape Town, South Africa when New Zealand beat South Africa 25-24. It was Rugby at its best and smacked a bit of the 1995 Rugby World Cup.
The victory at Newlands was the All Blacks’ sixth straight victory in the Rugby Championships tournament, and part of the reason why accusations have been made that the All Blacks’ dominance of World Rugby isn’t necessarily a good thing, especially for countries like Australia and South Africa. Australian sports journalist Bret Harris recently had all tongues wagging in this direction when, writing for the Guardian, he said that the absolute dominance by the All Blacks was starting to have watering down effect on international rugby.
He wrote that this was particularly true for a country like Australia, with the Wallabies playing New Zealand more often than any other side. When considering that the All Blacks had lost two games only since winning the 2015 Rugby World Cup, one starts to see the logic behind the seemingly dramatic statement.
Not Always At The Top Of Their Game
New Zealand hasn’t always been the overly dominant force in rugby that they are today. One has only to consider the period between 1991 and 2007 to realise this. During this time, the All Blacks were regularly knocked out of the World Cup competition already during the play-off stages.
It was always the same scenario: New Zealand would dominate the world of rugby between Wold Cups, only to fall back at a critical stage and have countries like Australia, South Africa and England step up to the plate in their absence. However, the tide turned in 2011, when they won their first Rugby World Cup after having been a non-event for so long. After that, it was the 2015 World Cup in the bag and it’s not an unfathomable idea at all that they will also take home the 2019 World Cup.
This kind of supreme dominance is one that is frowned upon heavily by the sporting world. Most other sports introduce methods to implement parity, some as extreme as salary caps in order to even things out a bit. It’s not something that will ever make its way into rest rugby, but it’s a very telling thing to consider as far as sports psychology goes.
With rugby it’s always been a case of letting the best team win. And really, that’s why we love the game.