New Zealand coach Steve Hansen has named an unchanged side for Saturday’s Rugby World Cup final against Australia. Photograph: AFP

Richie McCaw, despite some valiant efforts by Kiwi journalists, refused to confirm his retirement from rugby after Saturday’s World Cup final at Twick(...)

Daniel Carter passes the ball during a New Zealand training session at London Irish in London. Photograph: Phil Walter/Getty Images United Kingdom. Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images

There’s an aura about them alright. When the All Blacks make a team announcement it’s big news, and Steve Hansen was in his element when a huge media (...)

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen speaks during a  media session at the Oatlands Park hotel in Weybridge. Photograph:  Phil Walter/Getty Images

Steve Hansen doesn’t play the media game, he envelopes it with hard-nosed Kiwi honesty. This was a masterclass. The New Zealand coach quickly state(...)

New Zealand centre Conrad Smith has said South Africa represent the All Blacks’ ‘ultimate rival’ ahead of Saturday’s Rugby World Cup smei-final at Twickenham. Photograph: Getty

New Zealand centre Conrad Smith has described World Cup semi-final opponents South Africa as the All Blacks’ “ultimate rival.” The southern hemisphere(...)

France’s Morgan Parra and Brice Dulin try to halt New Zealand centre Ma’a Nonu at the Millennium Stadium. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Richie McCaw turns and leads with a glance. The other unsmiling giants immediately know the command is rapidity. Seven disciples, led by Kieran Read, (...)

 Kurtley Beale has won 47 Australian caps. Photograph: Getty.

Utility back Kurtley Beale has been dumped for the Wallabies’ final Rugby Championship match against Argentina after an in-flight row with a member of(...)

Kurtley Beale (right) of Australia receives a kick against New Zealand  during their Rugby Championship match in Sydney. Photograph: Jason Reed / Reuters

Australia 12 New Zealand 12 Australia foiled New Zealand’s bid to win an historic 18th consecutive Test as the Bledisloe Cup rivals played out (...)

Captain Richie McCaw with team-mates at a New Zealand training session ahead of their Bledisloe Cup match against Australia on Saturday in Sydney. Photograph: Reuters

At 8.05pm local time in Sydney, or 11.05am Irish time on Saturday morning, New Zealand will attempt to establish the longest winning sequence in the (...)

Paul O’Connell and his team-mates show their devastation after the final whistle. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

The one that got away alright. From trepidation, to hope, to excitement, to belief intermingled with continuing doubt, to genuine belief, and then dej(...)

Steven Luatua: “If I can be physical for the whole 80 minutes then I will walk away happy.”

Blindside flanker Steven Luatua has been given the opportunity to impose himself on the Ireland pack as the All Blacks seek to end their season unb(...)