New Zealand dominated every facet of the game to overwhelm Italy 96-17 at OL Stadium on Friday evening, taking a huge step towards the quarter-finals in the process.
In a performance that will have put the rest of the tournament on notice, the All Blacks effectively ended the contest before half-time. A devastating 17-minute first-half burst saw the three-time Rugby World Cup winners score 35 unanswered points, including a hat-trick for scrum-half Aaron Smith.
Down 49-3 at the break, the Azzurri had the briefest of respites at the start of the second half, when a flying Ange Capuozzo, roared on by the crowd, touched down in the corner. But the try served merely to reopen the floodgates, New Zealand responding with a further seven tries to give Sam Whitelock, who went past Richie McCaw as the most-capped All Black of all time, the perfect gift.
With New Zealand's forward pack rampant and the backs at their free-flowing best, a shell-shocked Italy simply had no answer.