New Zealand 20 England 15: Chris Robshaw refuses to take comfort from narrow defeat despite 'proud' performance

Robshaw believes the high standards England have set themselves in recent years mean they can't be happy with defeat in the first Test against the All Blacks

Auckland

Chris Robshaw refuses to take any comfort from a heroic 20-15 defeat by New Zealand as he reiterates England's desire to deliver a Test series victory.

It took a 78th-minute try by Conrad Smith conjured in the wake of a brave decision by Aaron Cruden to separate the rivals in a fiercely contested opener at Eden Park.

England finished with heroes all over the pitch, among them the heavily maligned Freddie Burns and Kyle Eastmond, but Robshaw is unable to look beyond the result.

"We're extremely proud of all the effort and that we were able to come here an do that, but we can't be happy," the Red Rose captain said.

"Because of the standards we set for each other now and the standards we play at, we're here to win a Test series and it's simple as that.

"We're 1-0 down but there are two Tests left and we see the bigger picture.

"We genuinely thought we could win here. There's no point stepping out on to the pitch if you don't believe that.

"That's the position we have got to with English rugby - we believe that.

"As a squad, we're in a good place, but it's one thing being in a good place and it's another thing winning. We will get better.

"There's one thing we have to do differently next week and that's win."

 

England were missing as many as 10 first choice starters either through injury or the fixture congestion that robbed them of their Aviva Premiership finalists, but still the All Blacks were forced to dig deep to amass a 15th successive victory.

The Northampton and Saracens contingents watched from the stands as New Zealand's two-decade triumphant run at Eden Park was threatened in a performance that bodes well for the second and third Tests.

Head coach Stuart Lancaster is now faced with a selection conundrum with the superb Rob Webber, Geoff Parling, James Haskell, Ben Morgan, Burns and Eastmond worthy of retention when the series resumes in Dunedin, yet they might all be dropped.

England have won just two Tests in 13 matches on Kiwi soil, but there is a real sense they can add to that record.

"New Zealand will improve, but so will we. This was our first hit-out for a while as well. Everyone is going to get better," Robshaw said.

"We know we're going to get stronger and stronger every week. We're going to be hard on ourselves this week.

"We know certain things didn't go our way, but we were pretty evenly-matched out there."

Read more: Brave England suffer late heartbreak
Five reasons to be cheerful in defeat
Lancaster: Now we must bottle frustration and use it

Burns and Cruden traded penalties but it was the All Blacks fly-half who took the bold decision to take a quick tap penalty instead of going for goal when the score was tied 15-15.

His instincts proved correct as soon after Smith darted over in the right corner with England stretched by Marland Yarde's loss to the sin-bin.

"We got ourselves in some good positions at times, but we didn't quite finish them off," Robshaw said.

"They probably got on our line twice and took a chance and that was the difference.

"Going into that last 10 minutes we had enough to win but credit to them, that's what they're good at.

"They got a chance and they took it, but we always knew that about them. We experienced it against them at Twickenham last year.

"We were in positions to win, but it's only the result that matters and that went their way."

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
fashionHealth concerns and 'pornified' perceptions have made women more conscious at the beach
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Sport
Ojo Onaolapo celebrates winning the bronze medal
commonwealth games
Arts and Entertainment
Rock band Led Zeppelin in the early 1970s
musicLed Zeppelin to release alternative Stairway To Heaven after 43 years
Arts and Entertainment
High-flyer: Chris Pratt in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'
filmHe was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
Sport
Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
footballA colourful discussion on tactics, the merits of the English footballer and rebuilding Manchester United
Life and Style
Sainsbury's could roll the lorries out across its whole fleet if they are successful
tech
Travel
The shipping news: a typical Snoozebox construction
travelSpending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Arts and Entertainment
'Old Fashioned' will be a different kind of love story to '50 Shades'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin's 'My Bed' is returning to the Tate more than 15 years after it first caused shockwaves at the gallery
artTracey Emin's bed returns to the Tate after record sale
Arts and Entertainment
Smart mover: Peter Bazalgette
filmHow live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences
Environment
Neil Young performing at Hyde Park, London, earlier this month
environment
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz