New NZ PM blamed for 'cursing' All Blacks

In one of the most bizarre theories going around, New Zealanders are blaming their new Prime Minister for the All Blacks' loss in the Bledisloe Cup.

The Wallabies finally snapped their Bledisloe Cup losing streak, toppling the All Blacks 23-18 in a thriller at a rain-drenched Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.

The third Test of the series might have been a dead rubber but Michael Cheika's men had a point to prove on Saturday night to their trans-Tasman enemies - and they did it, ending a run of seven straight defeats to score their first win over New Zealand since August 2015.

Australia scored three tries to two, showing new-found grit to close out the match as New Zealand mounted a late rally in front of 45,107 supporters who braved constant rain.

Two crunch second-half penalties from Reece Hodge - in the 64th and 78th minutes, both from beyond the halfway line - iced it for the Wallabies.

It marks the first time since 2011 that New Zealand have lost two Tests in a calendar year.

Not content with the fact that they'd already retained the famous trophy for an astonishing 15th straight time, some Kiwi fans blamed the rare defeat on their new Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern.

In an article on The New Zealand Herald questioning whether the PM had 'cursed' the All Blacks, the writers pointed out that their tongue-in-cheek prediction earlier in the week, may have come true.

Before the match, The Herald penned a column about the five reasons why the All Blacks should be worried against the Wallabies; four reasons were rugby related but one was a provocative reference the country's new leader.

The Ardern
The Ardern

It read: "Bear with us here ... the first time New Zealand had a female prime minister was when Jenny Shipley was in power between 1997-99 and in 1998, the All Blacks went through one of their worst losing streaks in history when dropping five tests in a row, culimnating in a horrible (for them) 19-14 loss to the Wallabies in Sydney.

"Coincidence? We hope so. The Aussies might disagree and see it as an omen."

Whether it was an omen or not, there was plenty of reaction on social media after the game (most of it angry) about the prospect of Ms Ardern "cursing" the All Blacks.

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen was philosophical about the result, noting the absence of key players like Beauden Barrett and Brodie Retallick and acknowledging there was no absence of effort from the team he rolled out.

"We'll go back and review our game and look at the things we need to work on and we'll fix them. The sun will come up tomorrow," Hansen said.

"When you look at the people that aren't here and the people that are, what a great opportunity for this team to grow and learn.

"The wheels on the bus keep going around, in two weeks' time we have to play another game and we'll take those learnings and we'll use the hurt that's here to grow.

"For a lot of guys, that's probably the first loss they've had in the All Black jersey. It's a feeling you don't just wash away, it'll take time to absorb it and you learn a lesson from it.

"There'll be some real good lessons to be learned."

Hansen conceded the Wallabies deserved the win, and rued handing the home side what he said was a seven-point head start through Reece Hodge's 70m intercept try early in the contest.

"They didn't blow any of the opportunities they had, they worked hard and put us under pressure as well and prevented us taking ours," he said.

"Australia played well. They'll be happy with themselves. Hopefully they kick on and have a great northern tour."