Mike Ruddock had led Wales to eight straight wins that included an historic Grand Slam in the RBS Six Nations Championship, but with six British Lions out of their team they found the Tri Nations champions too much to handle.
Rico Gear scored a hat-trick and Dan Carter added two tries and a perfect seven kicks from seven. It was fitting that the 100th anniversary of this famous fixture was billed as the unofficial world title between the best from the two hemispheres. And the All Blacks showed how determined they were to claim the title with a blistering start.
Wales defended well and it was more than ten minutes before Carter slotted the first of his penalties. Stephen Jones levelled the scores after a break by captain Gareth Thomas who had saved a certain try moments earlier with a crunching tackle on Byron Kelleher who had broken free from a quickly taken penalty.
Carter added a second before he was involved in the move that sent Gear over for his first. Mils Muliaina delivered the scoring pass and the All Blacks led 13-3 at half-time. It was vital that Wales got off to a good start in the second half but Carter and Gear combined to put the game beyond Wales grasp. Carter's break saw Gear grab his second on 44 minutes and just four minutes later the All Black wing was over again.
Thomas pulled off another try-saving tackle that left him with a dead leg and ended his involvement in the game after an hour. To their credit Wales never gave up and hammered away at the New Zealand line but could not find a way through. They were made to pay as Carter broke free to score on 67 minutes before grabbing his second in the final minute.
NZ: Con: Daniel Carter (79 mins)
NZ: Try: Daniel Carter (78 mins)
NZ: Con: Daniel Carter (67 mins)
NZ: Try: Daniel Carter (66 mins)
NZ: Drop: Daniel Carter (50 mins)
NZ: Try: Rico Gear (49 mins)
NZ: Con: Daniel Carter (44 mins)
NZ: Try: Rico Gear (43 mins)
NZ: Con: Daniel Carter (29 mins)
NZ: Try: Rico Gear (28 mins)
W: Pen: Stephen Jones (19 mins)
NZ: Pen: Daniel Carter (17 mins)
NZ: Pen: Daniel Carter (9 mins)
Wales: G Thomas (Toulouse, capt); K Morgan (Newport Gwent Dragons), M Taylor (Sale Sharks), C Sweeney (Newport Gwent Dragons), S Williams (Ospreys); S Jones (Clermont Auvergne), M Phillips (Cardiff Blues); D Jones (Ospreys), M Davies (Gloucester), A Jones (Ospreys), B Cockbain (Ospreys), R Sidoli (Cardiff Blues), J Thomas (Ospreys), C Charvis (Newcastle), M Owen (Newport Gwent Dragons)
Replacements: R Thomas (Cardiff Blues), C Horsman (Worcester), L Charteris (Newport Gwent Dragons), R Sowden-Taylor (Cardiff Blues), G Cooper (Newport Gwent Dragons), N Robinson (Cardiff Blues), L Byrne (Llanelli Scarlets)
New Zealand: M Muliaina (Auckland); R Gear (Nelson Bays), C Smith (Wellington), T Umaga (Wellington, capt), J Rokocoko (Auckland); D Carter (Canterbury), B Kelleher (Waikato); N Tialata (Wellington), A Oliver (Otago), C Hayman (Otago), C Jack (Canterbury), J Ryan (Otago), J Collins (Wellington), C Masoe (Taranaki), R So'oialo (Wellington)
Replacements: A Hore (Taranaki), T Woodcock (North Harbour), A Macdonald (Auckland), R McCaw (Canterbury), J Cowan (Southland), M Nonu (Wellington), L MacDonald (Canterbury)
Referee: Chris White (England)