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Current All Blacks are true greats: New Zealander John Plumtree

Niall Crozier

Ireland's defence coach, New Zealander John Plumtree, reckons the current All Blacks are "right up there" among the all-time great sides to have represented his country.

Ranked number one by the IRB for the past four years, reigning world champions and poised to create a little bit more history by becoming the first major nation since rugby union turned professional to go through a calendar year winning every match, the All Blacks deserve every accolade.

But are the best ever to wear that famous jersey with its iconic silver fern emblazoned on the left side, above the heart? Big question.

"I think this team have learned to handle pressure," Plumtree said. "They've been under so much pressure through the championship they've just come out of. In the past, All Blacks sides haven't done well at Ellis Park, and South Africa's a pretty good team, so for them to go and beat them there shows you how much this team have grown."

So is the best All Blacks team ever? "They'd be right up there, I'd say," Plumtree replied.

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