Fast-starting All Blacks see off Pumas

The All Blacks are highlighting the positives after chalking up another Jekyll and Hyde performance in the Rugby Championship, beating Argentina 36-10 in Buenos Aires.

Fast-starting All Blacks see off Pumas

Fast-starting All Blacks see off Pumas

After coasting across for four tries and a 29-3 lead inside 27 minutes, New Zealand could only cross the tryline of the rejuvenated Pumas once more in a combustible affair.

However, the world champions did comfortably enough to make it five from five in the Rugby Championship.

They had secured the title hours earlier when nearest rivals South Africa drew with Australia in Bloemfontein.

The All Blacks players seemed to launch their own celebration with an exuberant start, playing with attacking abandon which left the Pumas grasping.

However, as has been the case throughout the tournament, an extended period of sublime play from New Zealand blended with error-strewn rugby.

Both teams had two players sent to the sin bin, with the yellow cards shown to All Blacks loose forwards Matt Todd and Kieran Read either side of halftime one reason for the stutters.

A high tackle blotted the night for Read, who crossed twice, sandwiching tries from fullback Damian McKenzie and winger Waisake Naholo.

Diminutive livewire McKenzie and first five-eighth Beauden Barrett were the ringmasters, opening defensive lines with a compelling blend of acceleration and flick passes.

Up front, New Zealand dominated at scrum time and their physicality was led by lock Luke Romano, one of six starting changes from the team who embarrassed the Springboks 57-0 in Auckland two weeks ago.

Argentina's robust second half was rewarded with a try to veteran No.8 Juan Manuel Leguizamon.

The All Blacks finally snared a fifth try when David Havili crossed following the final hooter, dashing onto a short pass pass 10 minutes after entering the game from the bench.

Phlegmatic All Blacks coach Steve Hansen described the first half as "good" and the second as "fairly ordinary" before talking up the importance of the experience for a relatively young starting side boasting just over 400 caps.

"There's a little bit there that's just immaturity and you're going to have to expect that at times when you've got the young guys on," Hansen said.

"But now we've got another bunch of guys who have been in a tough place to play. Anyone who's been here knows that.

"The crowd gets in your head and when you're young and you're up by a few points, you start forgetting that you've got to go forward and earn the right to go wide."

Argentina suffered their 14th successive loss to a tier-one nation.

Their cause wasn't helped by yellow cards to forwards Tomas Lavanini and Ramiro Herrera in each half.

They will host Australia next week while the All Blacks will seek to complete successive unbeaten Rugby Championship campaigns against South Africa in Cape Town.

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