/ Rugby

New Zealand 24-9 France

Updated: Saturday, 22 Jun 2013 10:59 | Comments

Ben Smith slides in for the first try
Ben Smith slides in for the first try

New Zealand completed a 3-0 series clean sweep of France with a hard-fought but deserved 24-9 victory at Yarrow Stadium in New Plymouth.

Ben Smith's first-half try helped give the All Blacks an 8-6 lead at the break and local boy Beauden Barrett added a second score in the final minute to finish things off as New Zealand recorded a 26th successive home win and seventh on the trot against France.

The rest of New Zealand's points came from the boot of record-breaking fly-half Dan Carter, whose four penalties and one conversion saw him move onto 1,399 points in Test rugby on his 95th appearance.

France responded with two Jean-Marc Doussain penalties and a Florian Fritz drop goal but, despite an improved showing, they could not avoid slumping to a third successive loss against the world's top team, having been beaten 23-13 and 30-0 in the opening two matches.

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