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Last Updated: Saturday, 11 November 2006, 09:17 GMT
New Zealand 34-4 Great Britain
By Phil Harlow

New Zealand celebrate their fifth try of the match
New Zealand celebrate Manu Vatuvei's second-half try
New Zealand: (16) 34
Tries: Vagana, Webb 2, N Cayless, Vautuvei, Wiki
Goals: Jones 5

Great Britain: (4) 4
Tries: Ellis

Great Britain's hopes of reaching the Tri-Nations final suffered a major blow as they were totally outplayed by a dominant New Zealand in Wellington.

Stacey Jones gave a masterclass at scrum-half, while his forwards' display provided the platform for the Kiwis' record winning margin over the Lions.

Nigel Vagana and Brent Webb (2) put the Kiwis 16-4 up at half-time, with Gareth Ellis scoring Britain's only points.

And the Kiwis added three more tries after the break as the Lions crumbled.

Great Britain will now have to beat Australia next week to secure a place in the Tri-Nations final.

New Zealand were still smarting from having to give up the two points they had won for beating Great Britain in Christchurch, and the home side made their intentions clear from the off.

With Jones directing operations from half-back, the Kiwis looked to keep the ball alive and test Britain's defence away from the ruck - and the Lions were found wanting.

New Zealand scrum-half Stacey Jones
Britain had no answer to the performance of Stacey Jones

A spat between Steve Matai and Keith Senior, started when Matai threw the ball at Danny McGuire's head, resulted in both players being sin-binned after 10 minutes.

But it was New Zealand that dealt with the situation better, as they swept up the field to score the opening try after Vagana powered through some weak Lions defence at the play-the-ball.

Webb extended the Kiwis' lead after Jones' skilful loop around Ruben Wiki.

Great Britain got themselves back into the match with the next score, Ellis benefiting after Manu Vatuvei spilled McGuire's high kick to the corner.

But that was as good as it got for the Lions.

Webb grabbed his second of the match on 24 minutes, with Jones again the creator.

The efforts of New Zealand's physically imposing pack were too much for Britain, with Stuart Fielden almost anonymous in the front row, although there was no lack of effort.

Britain's kicking game began to fall apart under the pressure, with a string of aimless Sean Long kicks relieving any pressure on New Zealand.

The Lions were unlucky to have a Gareth Raynor effort ruled out by the video referee shortly before half-time, the official deciding that the winger had lost control in grounding the ball.

Stuart Fielden had an off day in Wellington
Great Britain prop Stuart Fielden is wrapped up by the Kiwi defence

After half-time, the Kiwis' significantly quicker play-the-ball really began to take its toll on the tourists.

The outstanding Jones, who ended the match with five conversions, created a try for Nathan Cayless with an inch-perfect chip over the top after 50 minutes.

Five minutes later, Vatuvei strolled over out wide after a simple passing move seemed to bamboozle the Lions defenders.

Leon Pryce burst through to give the Lions fans something to shout about only for his effort to be disallowed by the video official for a block by Paul Wellens.

And with 10 minutes left, Jones - enjoying an armchair ride behind his superb pack - applied a masterful finishing touch with a chip bouncing off the crossbar and into the arms of Wiki.

The final minutes were dominated by New Zealand, with Great Britain's shell-shocked players grateful to hear the final hooter.


New Zealand: Webb, Hape, Soliola, Matai, Vatuvei, Vagana, Jones, Wiki (capt), Halatau, Asotasi, Kidwell, Mannering, Fa'alogo.
Replacements: Tony, Cayless, Blair, Pritchard.

Great Britain: Wellens, Pryce, Senior, Yeaman, Raynor, McGuire, Long, Fielden, Newton, Morley, Peacock (capt), Hock, Ellis.
Replacements: Roby, Gilmour, Wilkin, Carvell.


SEE ALSO
New Zealand v GB photos
11 Nov 06 |  Rugby League
Noble retains belief despite loss
11 Nov 06 |  Rugby League
Clockwatch: NZ 34-4 GB
11 Nov 06 |  International
Australia 12-23 Great Britain
04 Nov 06 |  Rugby League
New Zealand 18-14 Great Britain
28 Oct 06 |  International


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