“There is a big difference…with northern hemisphere refs, it is always more of an arm wrestle.
“I still believe the All Blacks are the trendsetters. You can’t read too much into the Lions tour. New Zealand were on their way to winning the second test, and then the third test would have been totally different. Unfortunately, the incident with Sonny Bill happened.
“If you look at it in perspective, considering midweek games as well, I think it will be total arrogance if you think we have closed the gap with New Zealand.
“I’ve got so much respect for (NZ rugby) because they never take anything for granted. By the time you catch the All Blacks they are two levels ahead. They are still the trendsetters and it will be difficult to beat them.”