26 May 2012

All Blacks seek home comforts before Aussie tests

3:55 pm on 26 May 2012

The All Blacks will stay in New Zealand longer to prepare for away tests against Australia after losing the final Tri-Nations trophy to their arch-rivals last year.

The World Cup holders and world number ones have customarily landed in Australia up to a week in advance of tests but will delay their arrival until two days before their two away tests against the Wallabies this year.

All Blacks manager Darren Shand says it's more about the team trying to raise the bar as they haven't had the success they'd like in Australia and the coaches and players have been thinking hard about how they prepare and think it's worth changing their routine.

Shand says it's the norm for most New Zealand teams and to be honest, it's not much to travel for three hours.

The All Blacks have won eight of their last 13 away matches against second-ranked Australia since 2002, a proportion well down on their overall winning average of about 75 percent.