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Crowley reveals main priority for Italy after defeat to All Blacks

Crowley reveals main priority for Italy after defeat to All Blacks

Kieran Crowley believes Italy have set a standard from which they can build after watching his side lose their Autumn Nations Series opener 47-9 against New Zealand.

The Azzurri showed impressive resistance in the first half and tested the defence of the All Blacks on several occasions before Finlay Christie scored the opening try on 27 minutes.

A brace from Dane Coles stretched New Zealand’s lead but Paolo Garbisi struck three penalties to leave the score poised at 21-9 with an hour played at the Stadio Olimpico.

Four tries in the final 20 minutes from Sevu Reece, Asafo Aumua (2) and Hoskins Sotutu ultimately saw the world No.1 ranked side pull clear of the tiring hosts in Rome.

And after watching his side in competitive action for the first time since taking on the head coach role in the summer, Crowley said he is prioritising performance over results at this stage.

All Blacks overcome stubborn Italy with second-half blitz

“I’m very much about the performance and if the performance is as it should be then the result is the end product of the performance,” said the new Italy head coach.

“Yes, we had some positive performances today but there were also some negative ones. For me it’s all about performance and your outcome comes from performance.

“Now you can perform well and still get beaten. You look today I think Ireland put 60 points on Japan so it’s a fine line and for me, it’s about process first – you must get things right.

“If process is correct then results follow. Outcomes happen, you just need to focus on process first and it will be the same for Argentina and the same for Uruguay. If the result is in our favour then great but we must get process first and not think about end result.”

Player of the Match Coles credits Italy for Rome resistance

Italy will welcome Argentina up next in the Autumn Nations Series and former All Black player Crowley insisted that his team will need to up their game again against Los Pumas.

“I don’t think today’s performance would be enough against Argentina, definitely not,” he added.

“Today we had some good parts. Speed of ball was not good enough in attack. Yes, New Zealand defend differently to Argentina, our set play we must improve in those areas.

“Argentina will look to drive so our drive defence we will have to work on. What is good about today is that we now have a standard of things and we have areas we can improve on.”

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