New Zealand became the first team to retain the Rugby World Cup after holding off a second-half comeback by Australia to win 34-17 in an absorbing final, capping one of the most dominant eras in the sport’s history on Saturday.

In probably the last test of his record-breaking career, flyhalf Dan Carter steered the All Blacks to a record third global title — and first outside New Zealand — with a dropped goal, a penalty, and a conversion from Beauden Barrett’s breakaway try in the final 10 minutes at Twickenham.

Carter finished with 19 points, and finally played a full part in an All Blacks’ World Cup win after getting injured during the team’s 2011 title campaign. Read more…

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