On This Day in 2015: New Zealand make history to retain Rugby World Cup

By PA Sport Staff
·1 min read

New Zealand made history as they became the first side to retain the Rugby World Cup with a 34-17 win over Australia in a thrilling final at Twickenham on this day in 2015.

The victory cemented the All Blacks’ place as the greatest side in the sport’s history and ensured the Webb Ellis Cup would remain New Zealand’s property after a third overall triumph.

Dan Carter was outstanding in the All Blacks' victory
Dan Carter was outstanding in the All Blacks’ victory (David Davies/PA)

Nehe Milner-Skudder, Ma’a Nonu and Beauden Barrett all scored tries while Dan Carter booted 19 points on his All Blacks farewell, including a vital drop goal after quickfire replies from Australia’s David Pocock and Tevita Kuridrani.

Carter was named man of the match for his contribution, bringing his glittering 12-year, 112-cap career to a glorious end.

All Blacks captain Richie McCaw, another of the game’s greats, followed Carter into retirement soon after having earned 148 caps, a record 110 as captain, and lifted the World Cup twice.

New Zealand became the first side to win back-to-back World Cups
New Zealand became the first side to win back-to-back World Cups (Gareth Fuller/PA)

New Zealand took an early grip on the game with touchdowns and Milner-Skudder and Nonu helping them into a 21-3 lead.

The Wallabies rallied in the second half and scores from Pocock and Kuridrani brought them back within four points.

Carter put the All Blacks back in control with a superb long-range drop goal and a penalty before replacement Barrett’s late breakaway secured victory.