New Zealand captain Richie McCaw expects England to improve for second Test in Dunedin
Last Updated: 08/06/14 1:03pm
New Zealand captain Richie McCaw has warned his team-mates they must improve if they are to seal a series victory over England in Dunedin.
The All Blacks avoided a first defeat in 20 years at Eden Park on Saturday when they triumphed 20-15 over Stuart Lancaster's side, though they left it late to maintain their winning run.
Conrad Smith dived over in the 78th minute to see the reigning world champions come out on top, but McCaw knows England could be an even tougher nut to crack in the second Test.
The tourists will be bolstered by the availability of players from Aviva Premiership finalists Northampton and Saracens for the clash at Forsyth Barr Stadium, which is live on Sky Sports 1 HD from 8am next Saturday.
"We got there in the end but we need to be a lot better going into the second Test because we expect England to be better," flanker McCaw said.
"We got what we expected from England. It was pretty competitive around the breakdown and we expected the physicality they showed.
"We were a bit rusty in the first half. Test rugby is a step up in intensity and pace and it felt like we were half a yard off it.
"We started to get into the game in the second half and built a bit of pressure."
We were a bit rusty in the first half. Test rugby is a step up in intensity and pace and it felt like we were half a yard off it.
Although England may select a few fresh faces for next weekend, New Zealand coach Steve Hansen does not expect that to lead to a different approach.
Lancaster is actually now facing something of a selection dilemma following the performance in Auckland, with as many as 10 regulars having watched on from the stands due to their club commitments the previous weekend.
"They won't change how they play. Their gameplan might vary by one to two degrees, but basically we'll get what we got in the first Test," Hansen said.
"Maybe there will be one or two fresh faces, but then they may be very happy with what they have and keep the same players."