Dallin Watene-Zelezniak equaled the record for most tries in a single World Cup match by a Kiwi, crossing four times in New Zealand's 68-6 victory over Jamaica in Hull.
The veteran Warriors winger scored four tries - with the first three coming inside the opening 20 minutes of the match - and set up another two with clever kicks back in field, before leaving the field with cramp in the 62nd minute.
The haul equaled Manu Vatuvei's effort against England at the 2008 edition of the tournament.
While they were outclassed on the day by the world No.1 Kiwis, Jamaica excited with an adventurous style of play and scored their first ever World Cup try through national team stalwart Ben Jones-Bishop.
New Zealand scored seven first-half tries, but led by the relatively modest margin of 34-0 at the break due to Kieran Foran converting only three attempts, as the veteran half struggled with the responsibility handed to him with Jordan Rapana (not selected) and Dylan Brown (illness) out of the squad.
Of main concern for the Kiwis will be prop Moses Leota (leg) and utility Marata Niukore (chest) failing to play the second half.
Match: New Zealand v Jamaica
Round 2 -
Venue: MKM Stadium, Hull
- New Zealand are through to the quarter-finals.
- Dallin Watene-Zelezniak's four-try showing equaled the most tries in a World Cup game by a New Zealander.
- The Reggae Warriors scored their first ever World Cup try through veteran back Ben Jones-Bishop, garnering a huge cheer from the crowd in attendance in Hull.
- Jones Bishop was playing in his 300th first-class match and both sides formed a guard of honour for him as he left the field.
- Prop Moses Leota (leg) and utility Marata Niukore (chest) didn't take part in the second half.
- The first three tries came down the right side for the Kiwis, with Watene-Zelezniak, in his first Test since 2019, crossing for three and Peta Hiku the other to get New Zealand to an 18-0 lead.
- Niukore palmed through the defence for the Kiwis' fifth, before Sebastian Kris scored the first try of his Test career.
- Watene-Zelezniak turned provider just before the break, kicking back in field for Jeremy Marshall-King to score.
- Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad opened the second-half scoring, followed by four-pointers from Briton Nikora and a second for Marshall-King.
- Watene-Zelezniak hobbled over for his fourth, before leaving the field with cramp.
- Roosters-bound hooker Brandon Smith scored back-to-back tries in the final 15 minutes, before Bishop-Jones marked one of the best moments of the tournament when he scored for Jamaica.
Play of the Game
Jamaica are fast becoming everyone's second team at this World Cup, and their first ever try at the tournament got a huge cheer in Hull. Making it even better was that the scorer was national team stalwart Ben Jones-Bishop.
What they Said
"I am very pleased with the effort and energy the boys brought tonight. The boys fought every minute of the game. I would have liked the score to be closer of course, but overall I am definitely happy." - Jamaica coach Romeo Monteith.
"I am real pleased how the players went about what they did. From our last game to this one I thought our cohesion was better, but we also know we can get better again." - New Zealand coach Michael Maguire.
Ahead of the quarter-finals the Kiwis take on Ireland in Leeds, while Jamaica conclude their maiden World Cup campaign against Lebanon.