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Ntamack audacity that sparked All Black success

Ntamack audacity that sparked All Black success

No moment encapsulated the Autumn Nations Series in 2021 better than Romain Ntamack’s daring run out of his own in-goal area in France’s stunning success over New Zealand in Paris.

After a blistering first half in which Les Bleus ran in three tries – including one for Ntamack – to hand New Zealand their biggest-ever half-time deficit, the All Blacks fought back early in the second half.

From 24-6, New Zealand came back to trail 27-25 heading into the game’s final quarter. When they recovered a loose ball in their own 22 and attacked, it seemed like they might be in again. A kick through from Jordie Barrett had France scrambling back, with Ntamack claiming the ball on his own try-line.

A five-metre scrum seemed inevitable, but instead, Ntamack turned away from Brad Weber, shrugged off the tackle of Richie Mo’unga, rounded Jordie Barrett and then produced a sublime blind pass to Melvyn Jaminet on the shoulder.

Rather than defending a set-piece on their own line, France were able to attack with Antoine Dupont supporting Jaminet and the move eventually breaking down following an infringement at the breakdown by Ardie Savea that saw him sent to the sin-bin.

Jaminet slotted the penalty to put France five points clear and from there they never looked back on the way to a 40-25 success.

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