The Wallabies admire the All Blacks’ haka, according to Australia’s captain James Slipper, who made the statement on Friday after hostilities between the two sides in the lead-up to their crucial match.
At Auckland’s Eden Park, where the hosts haven’t lost since 1994 and haven’t lost to the Wallabies since 1986, the All Blacks take on Australia on Saturday.
All Black star Rieko Ioane accused several members of the Australian team of not taking the haka seriously, according to Australia’s head coach Dave Rennie, a New Zealander.
The All Blacks challenge the opponent with the maori war dance known as the haka before each game.
The Australian team responded by forming a curved “boomerang” during the Haka before last week’s Test in Melbourne, which the All Blacks won 39-37 in a contentious and dramatic fashion.
That wasn’t a sign of disrespect, according to Slipper.
“Both the Haka and the All Blacks team are respected. We are aware that every time we play New Zealand, it will be difficult. Respect must be shown for that,” reports were told by Slipper at Eden Park.
The Wallabies, according to Slipper, have not yet decided how they would react to the Haka this weekend.
Sam Whitelock, the All Blacks’ interim captain while regular captain Sam Cane recovers from a head injury, also made an effort to diffuse the situation by claiming he had no problem with the boomerang formation.
Everyone is aware that the boomerang originated in Australia, therefore they are undoubtedly doing something to strengthen their sense of national unity, according to Whitelock.
Slipper is aware that his team has to break the past in order to triumph at Eden Park after losing each of the 22 encounters with New Zealand there since 1986.
“History is not on our side. Although we are optimistic, we are aware that a lot of work has to be put forward,” said he.
“A (Wallabies) squad will eventually triumph here; we want to be the one.”
Last week, the All Blacks were only inches away from defeating the Australians when a last-second Jordie Barrett try secured the victory for the visitors.
After retaining the Bledisloe Cup for the 20th consecutive year, it gave New Zealand a chance to win The Rugby Championship on Saturday.
The most sad thing for us is that we lost the Bledisloe Cup trophy, said Slipper.
“There is still a lot at stake.
“It stings because we haven’t triumphed here since the 1980s.
“We are adamant about putting up a show.”
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