Grant Chapman: All Blacks v Australia in Bledisloe Cup III - player ratings

OPINION: After drawing their first meeting three weeks ago, the All Blacks have completed their Bledisloe Cup turnaround against Australia with a 43-5 romp in Sydney.

New Zealand were on top from the start and owed their dominance to a pair of Crusaders stars - one who bagged 23 points, including two tries, and another who simply refused to take a backward step in the forward exchanges.  

Individual All Blacks player ratings for Bledisloe III were: 

1-Karl Tu'inukuafe 6

Scored his first test try, but needed to, after ignoring an overlap to cut back infield. Squandered another attacking opportunity with a dropped pass and anchored a scrum that struggled for early parity.

Replaced by Alex Hodgman in the 45th minute.

2-Dane Coles 8

Mixed sublime with ridiculous, scoring from a lineout drive, but botching another, after outpacing Aussie scrumhalf Nic White to chase down a kick behind the goal-line. Almost set up Caleb Clarke in the corner and stole a lineout.

Keeps finding new ways to influence a game from hooker. Replaced by Codie Taylor in the 45th minute.

3-Ofa Tuungafasi 5

Struggled to contain veteran counterpart James Slipper all night, but got a couple back before he was replaced by Tyrel Lomax in the 55th minute. 

4-Patrick Tuipulotu 7

Contributed mightily to All Blacks' lineout dominance, winning the attacking throw that lead to Mo'unga's first try. Has taken a big step up in the absence of Retallick and Whitelock this season.

Replaced by Scott Barrett in the 55th minute.

Grant Chapman: All Blacks v Australia in Bledisloe Cup III - player ratings

5-Sam Whitelock 9

Mr Reliable in all facets of the game. Won the lineout that lead to Coles' driving-maul try, stole another off a Wallabies throw and won a turnover at the breakdown.

Led his team in tackles (eight) and hit-ups (12), while playing the full 80 minutes - what more can you ask for?

6-Shannon Frizell 7

Was only a step behind Whitelock in the tight stuff, with 10 tough hit-ups and six tackles, but marred his performance with a yellow card in the closing moments for an inadvertent high shot.

Didn't show out in the open, but has provided that hard edge needed from a blindside flanker.

7-Sam Cane 7 

Lead his team in tackles, until he was nailed in one himself in the 68th minute and left the game for an Head Injury Assessment. Watching him flexing that troublesome neck, it wouldn't surprise if he's rested next week.

Was one of several left groping was the Aussies scored their only try, but a menace at the breakdown, where he caused at least two turnovers.

8-Hoskins Sotutu 6

Wasn't seen at his barnstorming best, but executed off the back of a scrum to set up Rieko Ioane's try. Lost a lineout catch and conceded a couple of penalties, but played a full 80, and had to adjust his role from coming on late with fresh legs to grinding from the start.

A performance to build on.

Karl Tu'inukuafe scores his first All Blacks try
Karl Tu'inukuafe scores his first All Blacks try. Photo credit: Photosport

9-Aaron Smith 7

A real mixed bag for the busy halfback, whose turnover led to the Australian try just after halftime. Laid on assists for Tu'inukuafe and Mo'unga's first touchdown, and another for Clarke's near try, then put up the box kick that almost led to Mo'unga's third.

Replaced by TJ Perenara in the 55th minute.

10-Richie Mo'unga 9

Put to bed any questions over his ownership of the No.10 jersey with a virtuoso performance. Scored two sensational individual tries, almost had a third, while providing an assist for Jordie Barrett and kicking expertly for Coles' near try.

Kicked six-of-seven for 23 points, but blotted an otherwise spectacular outing with a missed tackle on Jordan Petaia that led to the Aussie try.

11-Caleb Clarke 7

Was targeted by the Wallabies early and stood up to it well, reducing the opposition to 14 men, when he was tackled in mid-air chasing a high kick. Tackled counterpart Filipo Daugunu strongly and popped up on the other wing to almost score in the corner, before he was tackled into touch-in-goal.

Barely sighted in the second half, but maybe the Aussies had learned he wasn't the right guy to target after all.

12-Jack Goodhue 5 

Another left in Petaia's wake during the Wallabies try, Goodhue was rarely spotted in the openfield, although he also spilled Mo'unga's late offload with the tryline beckoning and possibly got away with some mid-air obstruction in the first-five's second try.

Was subbed off for Ngani Laumape in the 61st minute.

13-Anton Lienert-Brown 7

Set the tone with a big tackle in the opening minute and added six more in an 80-minute effort. Had a knack for finding the ball and consolidated his reputation as New Zealand's midfield anchor.

Caleb Clarke & Beauden Barrett savour Bledisloe Cup victory
Caleb Clarke & Beauden Barrett savour Bledisloe Cup victory. Photo credit: Photosport

14-Jordie Barrett 7

Got off to a bad start, when he lost the ball in a tackle with the line open and then drew a yellow card for a forearm fend in that same tackle. Luckily, his absence did not hurt his team and he returned to score a late try, running an angle off Mo'unga and splitting the defence to run 50m.

Moved to fullback, when brother Beauden was subbed off.

15-Beauden Barrett 7

Again showed why the All Blacks brains trust love that dual-playmaker approach, providing a perfect foil to Mo'unga at first-five. Put the chip behind the Aussie defence for Mo'unga's second try.

Replaced by Ioane in the 66th minute.

16-Codie Taylor 6

Lost an early lineout throw, after replacing Coles in the 45th minute, but helped right the scrum.

17-Alex Hodgman 6

Helped steady the scrum and tried to get involved in the loose as well, after replacing Tu'inukuafe in the 45th minute.

18-Tyrel Lomax 6

The All Blacks scrum finally achieved dominance over their counterparts when Lomax arrived on the field - but by then, both packs looked very different to their starting line-ups.

19-Scott Barrett 6

Stole a lineout against the throw and no doubt contributed to the improved scrum effort. Replaced Tuipulotu in the 55th minute and still working his way back into game shape.

20-Dalton Papalii 5

Had little opportunity to distinguish himself in his 12 minutes on the field, but made four tackles after replacing his captain.

21-TJ Perenara 5

Replaced Smith in the 55th minute and threw a loose pass that put the All Blacks under pressure, conceding a defensive penalty. Was also smashed in a marginal tackle and may need a week off.

22-Ngani Laumape 6

Returning for his first game time since breaking his wrist in July, Laumape looked typically abrasive and will be better for this run.

23-Rieko Ioane 7

Showed he hadn't forgotten how to score, running off a scrum for a late try. Probably needed to atone though, after wasting an overlap moments before.

Significant that he came off the bench as an outside-back reserve and not considered midfield cover, which suggests he may struggle to find another start at centre anytime soon.

Grant Chapman is Newshub online sports editor. Join us next Saturday for live updates of the fourth All Blacks v Australia Bledisloe Cup clash.