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1 Dec 2023 10:42
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  •   Home > News > Sports > Rugby League

    Kiwis hammer Kangaroos 30-0 to claim Pacific Championships title in major upset

    Considered underdogs heading into the Pacific Championships final, New Zealand stuns World Cup winners Australia with a 30-0 victory in Hamilton.

    - article from

    New Zealand has handed Australia its heaviest defeat in its proud history with a record-breaking 30-0 win in the Pacific Championships final in Hamilton.

    It was Australia's biggest losing margin in a Test match, coming only a week after the World Cup winners defeated the Kiwis 36-18 in Melbourne.

    From start to finish on Saturday, the Kiwis were superior in every facet of play against a Kangaroos outfit that offered nothing in attack and appeared disinterested in defence.

    Kiwis lock Joseph Tapine led the pack and halves Dylan Brown and Jahrome Hughes controlled play at their leisure.

    Winger Jamayne Isaako scored a double to continue his incredible year.

    As a collective this was the Kiwis at their best in their first win over the Kangaroos since 2018.

    Winger Ronaldo Mulitalo started and finished a sensational length-of-the-field movement by the Kiwis in the 14th minute.

    The Cronulla flyer made a line-break initially and two plays later was on the end of a perfectly weighted Brown cutout pass.

    Mulitalo was on fire throughout the first half with his running game, but he also unleashed a ferocious ball-and-all tackle on opposite number Valentine Holmes when the Kangaroos winger looked threatening.

    Brown and Hughes were on song in combination in the opening stanza. Hughes linked with fullback Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad to send Isaako over in the corner for a fabulous team try on the cusp of half-time.

    The hosts had five line-breaks to one in the first half and were powered up front by Tapine and bench forward Leo Thompson.

    Starting Kiwis props Moses Leota and James Fisher-Harris outplayed Kangaroos duo Payne Haas and Tino Fa'asuamaleaui.

    The Kangaroos missed 34 tackles in the first half and had no intensity in their play.

    They were just as bad in the second half.

    Isaako finished a scrum move in the corner following the break after a floating Hughes ball caught the Kangaroos short.

    He put the ball down just inside the touch-in-goal line in a sublime piece of skill to give the Kiwis a 16-0 lead.

    Brown was at his lethal best when his soft hands put barnstorming centre Matt Timoko over under the posts, before bench forward Griffin Neame bulldozed past Nicho Hynes and James Tedesco to embarrass the threadbare Kangaroos defence.


    © 2023 ABC Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved

     Other Rugby League News
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     28 Nov: Kiwis captain James Fisher-Harris, lock Joseph Tapine and Kangaroos prop Payne Haas are up for rugby league's Golden Boot award
     27 Nov: Kiwi boxer Mea Motu is looking inward as she counts down to her bout again India's Chandni Mehra this weekend
     27 Nov: An endorsement from Supercars great Greg Murphy for rookie Matt Payne after his breakout win at the Adelaide 500
     26 Nov: Meanwhile Southern United are relishing their maiden appearance in the women's National League final, also at Mt Smart
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