'We knew we'd have someone in the bin at some stage': Best laid plans pay off for Hansen

14 points conceded with a man in the bin? Steve Hansen doesn’t believe in worrying.

Image: AP/Press Association Images

WORLD CUP-WINNING coach Steve Hansen loves it when a plan comes together, so seeing his side ride out a second half Wallaby rally must have been extremely satisfying.

Having led 21 – 3 in the second period, the sin-binning of Ben Smith rocked the All Blacks and the Wallabies managed to reel the deficit in to 21 – 17 with converted tries from David Pocock and Tevita Kuridrani.

However, Hansen’s men are a different animal to the Kiwi teams that fell on the big stages in pre-2011 World Cups. They have the mental strength to match their supreme talent.

“I’ve always said worry is a wasted emotion,” Hansen said of the 14-point concession during the sin-bin period.

“You’ve got to plan for some of these things. We knew we’d have someone in the bin at some stage. So it’s just about making sure you get everyone understanding what they have to do.”

Planning and trusting ability has been the central message from Hansen all tournament long. When his side stuttered in the group stage, he remained a steady voice of reason pointing at the biggest games to come. And, in the big game, the biggest of players came good at Twickenham.

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“He’s one of the great players,” Hansen said of Dan Carter’s performance after the France-bound out-half kicked 19 points on top of a sublime performance en route to his second World Cup medal – though the first he played a key role in securing.

To be able to come out and show all his skills tonight, he was pretty special.

“It’s a great way to finish for them. You couldn’t have scripted it any better. We’ll celebrate that at some stage I’m sure.

“All tournament they’ve just quietly built away and we got the job done today.”

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Sean Farrell

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