The All Blacks were on track for their 18th Test victory on the bounce when they led 9-3 at half time but the Wallabies clawed them back in the driving rain.
The only contributors to the scoreboard were the kickers, New Zealand’s Aaron Cruden and the Wallabies Kurtley Beale, each kicking four goals.
It could have been so much greater for the hosts though, as the men in gold wasted chances to take the win at the death.
However, this 150th match between the sides dating back to 1903 was a massive improvement from recent meetings.
A draw also makes the match the first the All Blacks haven’t won since the Rugby Championship was renamed from the Tri-Nations.
The RC opener doubled as the Bledisloe Cup opener, with the second clash next week to decide the Oz-NZ trophy holder – the All Blacks have held it since 2002.
Aussie captain Michael Hooper praised his side’s continued improvement but knows the spoils could have and should have been greater.
“We’re improving every time,” he said. “The draw feels like a loss with the fact we got so close and had a chance to win at the end. We had good moments in tough conditions.”
Richie McCaw, the Kiwi captain, was humble in what would have definitely been considered the equivalent of a defeat for his side.
“Conditions played a big part, and 12-12 is probably a fair reflection,” he said.
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