The Rugby World Cup will have a new home for the next four years after England knocked out the All Blacks with a stunning 19-7 semifinal win.
Here is how the English media responded to the match:
Mick Cleary of the Telegraph UK:
“Eddie Jones wanted his side to create history by knocking New Zealand off their perch. And it wasn’t a nudge that they gave the All Blacks. It was a bloomin’ great wallop in the ribs, reducing the world’s most accomplished team to not just mere mortals but also-rans. The victory was more emphatic than the scoreboard indicates.
“Eddie Jones wanted his side to create history. And they have. They had never beaten New Zealand at a World Cup. This was only their second win in the last 17 encounters. This was a defining performance, full of grit and cleverness and heart, England’s finest ever victory. Of course it is only a semi-final. Of course, there is another massive hurdle to try and clamber over.”
“Eddie Jones had spoken in the week of his confidence that the Red Rose could book a first final place since 2007, and they duly defeated the All Blacks – tournament winners in 2011 and 2015.
“And the Red Rose duly produced with a magnificent, powerful display, as they continue their quest to match the 2003 achievement of becoming world champions.”
Stephen Jones for The Times:
“This was one of England’s greatest sporting days – and I am not just talking rugby here. The planning, execution, defending and attacking of this breathtaking England team made it arguably their greatest day, a performance they will find hard to surpass if they win the final at the same venue next Saturday.
“New Zealand lose occasionally but they are never crushed. So this was a glorious first. Forget the scoreboard. They scored one lucky try and for the rest of the evening they looked like little boys being bullied outside the sweet shop. They were lucky not to lose players to the bin and there was a time when Marius Jonker, the TMO, was a far bigger danger to England than the opposition.
“Sam Underhill and Tom Curry, the flankers, cannot play that well twice in two games, surely. Well, maybe you can. They did. The England defence was stunning with Maro Itoje and Manu Tuilagi off the planet.”
Paul Grayson for BBC Radio 5 Live
“England got it absolutely right. The quality of some of the tackling – you were never two passes away from a dominant hit and they picked when to go in and compete almost perfectly. England spent the whole of the second half forcing New Zealand to play out from their own third. They were physically and mentally dominant today.”
“New Zealand were supposed to emerge for the second half like a wounded animal. England had rocked and out-rucked, even out-leapt at the line-outs Steve Hansen’s side had so pointedly targeted. For each inch that Eddie Jones’ side played brilliantly, they had strangled the myth of the All Blacks far from reality.
“But, when the inevitable fightback came, an early charge, a quick cycling through the backline that had until then been so deflated, England acted so quickly to extinguish it.
“Everyone believed England would crumble in the face of this adversity, but the fall never came and now, surely, after dethroning the champions, they are ready to carve an era of their own.”