Wales coach Warren Gatland praised the impact of his bench players in their emphatic 74-24 November international victory over Tonga after the Pacific islanders had briefly threatened an upset.
England overcame a shocking first half when their experimental side trailed an effervescent Japan 15-10 to turn on the power after the break and run out somewhat flattering 35-15 winners in a classic game of two halves.
Flyhalf Handre Pollard scored 18 points to provide the platform for a narrow 26-20 win for South Africa over hosts Scotland in their test at Murrayfield on Saturday.
New Zealand coach Steve Hansen expects "a trick or two" from Ireland in their November international in Dublin tomorrow morning.
Halfback Aaron Smith is set for his 82nd test against Ireland; an outing which will see him overtake Justin Marshall as New Zealand's most capped No 9.
New Zealand has won the rights to host the 2021 women's Rugby World Cup - the first to be staged in the Southern Hemisphere - beating Australia's bid.
As expected, the All Blacks will not play a test in the South Island next year as the international schedule is impacted by the World Cup.
There's clearly a bit of ill-feeling in Ireland about the way things played out the last time the All Blacks were in Dublin.
Otago has two of the best sevens players in the country but the likelihood of seeing them in the blue and gold in the shortened version of the game appears slim.
Otago will field a new-look team for this year's sevens campaign but one which will not lack effort.
Ireland have been dealt two major blows with halfback Conor Murray and midfielder Robbie Henshaw ruled out of this weekend's test against the All Blacks in Dublin.
New Zealand coach Steve Hansen is willing to sit down and have a chat to Ireland's Joe Schmidt about the pressures of the All Blacks job if he is serious about applying for it.
All Black Sonny Bill Williams' cursed run of injuries is continuing after he was ruled out of this week's blockbuster test against Ireland in Dublin.