In the past 107 years, New Zealand’s All Blacks have only lost 37 times at home. And the only teams to beat them were Australia, South Africa, England and France.
Did anyone really believe Canada would have a chance to join that club after their Sunday encounter at the Rugby World Cup?
Canada stood respectfully on their half before the match and watched the New Zealanders perform the Haka, then they got a painful lesson in All Blacks rugby as the hosts posted an 79-15 win in Wellington, NZ.
The Canadians took a 3-0 lead on a penalty kick by Ander Munro early in the match. Then New Zealand's forwards came to life, their backs found their space, and the onslaught began.
Zac Guildford scored the first of his three first-half tries to get it going. Victor Vito, Israel Dagg, and Mils Mulaina added scores to give New Zealand a 37-3 lead before Conor Trainor finished off a good late surge before the break to make it 37-8 at halftime.
Trainor cut the deficit to 37-15 after the ball was kicked forward following missed pass by New Zealand. But that’s where the fun ended for Canada, who were taking a physical beating.
Jimmy Cowan re-started the devastation. Jerome Kaino then scored to make it 51-15. Sonny Bill Williams found the corner to up the score to 58-15.
Kaino added his second try, Guildford added his fourth, and Vito finished proceedings with his second right on full time.
New Zealand finish first in Pool A and will play Argentina in the quarter-finals. Canada finished fourth in the group with a 1-2-1 record.