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Read keeps focus under yellow card pressure

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Lynn McConnell     09 Sep 2017     Getty Images

Read said losing a first five-eighths to a yellow card was a little strange and it had put some pressure on how they wanted to attack.
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However, with Argentina getting out to a 22-15 lead with 31 minutes remaining, it was make-or-break for the All Blacks but they had turned the issue around and were dominant in the 10 minutes Barrett was off the field, and beyond.

"It was probably that time of the game when if we could just up the tempo a little bit we saw the results of what happened from that.

"It didn't really change too much of our mindset and we just had to work a bit harder and try to attack as much as we could," he said.



Argentina had played well, Read said, but scoring six tries to one was a sign of how good the All Blacks felt in spite of the wet conditions. They had the ball and were able to build pressure.

"The key for us is we don't get over-excited and try and keep pushing that pass or not executing when we needed to.

"It came down to us really. As soon as we wanted to respect the ball and look after it, win the breakdown, it became a bit easier so that's where we've got to really work hard and try not to just wait for that to happen and try to make it happen from the start," he said.

Coach Steve Hansen said the man of the match flanker Vaea Fifita, who made his starting debut and marked it with one of the great individual All Blacks tries, had to keep working on his game in order to reach his potential but the game was a starting point and he had shown a little bit of his potential in the game.

Having him on the left flank had been pre-planned, he said, but he added it hadn't been intended that he would run as far as he did to score his try.

He said in the breakdown contest New Zealand had gone to ground too soon and then didn't get the right people in to clean out. There was some dispute over interpretations of whether the ball was out or not but referee Angus Gardiner had called that they were out.

"We have to adjust and adapt to the referee and we didn't do that," he said.

Hansen said he had been happy enough with the way the back three had coped with the high ball sent their way, especially by Argentina's first five-eighths Nicolas Sanchez. But he added that when the ball was wet like it was, with rain at some stages during the game, the odd one was sometimes going to be missed.

The injury prop Joe Moody suffered was a dislocated shoulder and while he had gone to hospital for a scan it appeared an operation would be necessary which would rule him out for the remainder of the season, Hansen said.

In relation to Beauden Barrett's off-night of goal-kicking, Hansen said it wasn't a concern when he had a 100 percent night in Dunedin in their last game, but it was no more of an issue than it had been during the season.

Assistant coach Ian Foster said it was just a case of time with Barrett.

"He's really clear about how he kicks and what he works on and if you look at the two Bledisloe Cup games he kicked really well and his percentages are high. But like Steve said, there's just been a bit of a pattern that when there is an off night there is an off night.

"His first three kicks were conversions five metres from the sideline so they're not easy kicks and again, he'll know what went wrong. But it's just time in the saddle and it's something he's working hard on and he is actually producing really good results with that but tonight was one of those nights when it didn't quite work for him," he said.