England edged out in All Blacks thriller
Bath Rugby’s Sam Underhill had a try disallowed five minutes from time as England were denied a famous victory over New Zealand.
In the first meeting of the sides since 2014, England raced out of the blocks with tries from Chris Ashton and Dylan Hartley only to finish on the wrong end of a 16-15 final scoreline.
It could have been different though, with Underhill crossing five minutes from time, only for the try to be disallowed for a Courtney Lawes offside.
England had flown out of the blocks, with Ashton over in just two minutes following a fine wide pass by Ben Youngs.
While Owen Farrell’s conversion came back off the post, he stretched the lead eight points with a drop goal.
And when Hartley was the man to emerge from a pile of bodies after a rolling maul, England were in complete control.
New Zealand fought back, Damian McKenzie crossing on the stroke of half-time with Beauden Barrett’s conversion and a penalty making it 15-10 at the break.
The fly-half added a drop goal and a penalty in the second half to give New Zealand a 16-15 lead which they held onto throughout.
That was despite Underhill’s best efforts. He was quickest to react when Lawes charged down TJ Perenara and then bamboozled Barrett on his way to the line, but Lawes was deemed to have gone fractionally early and the try was ruled out.