New Zealand continued the defence of their World Cup crown by running in nine tries to sweep aside minnows Namibia at the Olympic Stadium. Man-of-the-match Nehe Milner-Skudder and Julian Savea scored two tries apiece as the Kiwis secured a bonus point which keeps them on course to top Pool C.
Victor Vito, Malakai Fekitoa, Beauden Barrett, Ben Smith and Codie Taylor added further tries for the Kiwis on a night where they made 12 changes from the opening victory over Argentina yet showed no signs of lacking in cutting edge. Namibia held their own for long periods, including after Jaco Engels was sin-binned in the second half and were able to emerge from the contest with a tinge of respectability.
Though the team led by Saracens flanker Jacques Burger were unable to even flirt with the idea of staging a shock result, in keeping with an until now successful tournament for the associate nations Namibia were competitive against an All Blacks team honing in on becoming the first side to successfully defend a world title. Johan Deysel did score a try after the break, but their winless run in the tournament has been extended to 16 matches.
"To play against the number one team in the world, we did well and stuck to our guns," Deysel said. "We gave some stupid tries away but that is a lack of experience. It is a dream come true to score against the All Blacks. It is amazing. For all our supporters back home and here, thanks again."
Steve Hansen's team meanwhile are now unbeaten in 26 pool stage matches at the World Cup and despite again being far from their free-flowing best, the 660 international caps which they began with on the bench emphasises the options they have come the latter stages of the tournament. Their next match against another minnow in the form of Georgia could be a similar affair but an improvement will be demanded.