The All Blacks have claimed a 54-6 rugby Test win over Japan, but it was far from an emphatic performance in Tokyo.
While the inexperienced All Blacks line-up were never going to lose, there was not the level of execution and consistency that has been their hallmark this year.
The scrum in particular will have caused coach Steve Hansen some concern, although skipper Richie McCaw scored his try in the first half when the scrum was under pressure and it did improve in the second half.
Despite the patchy performance, New Zealand still managed to rack up eight tries in a stop-start encounter against the game but limited Japanese at Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium.
Charles Piutau, McCaw, Sam Cane and Ben Smith all crossed in the first half.
Jeremy Thrush, Frank Halai, Beauden Barrett and Piutau added five-pointers to the tally in the second spell.
First five-eighth Dan Carter and McCaw, playing at No.8, also survived unscathed with Carter replaced by Tom Taylor in the 51st minute and McCaw playing the full 80.
Winger Piutau was the standout for the All Blacks and he played a key role in the tries for Cane and Smith.
Errors from both sides and South African referee Stuart Berry's constant whistling didn't help the flow of the game and it was 10 minutes before Piutau broke the deadlock with the opening try, which came off a mistake by Japan No.8 Ryu Koliniasi Holani.
Japan, as expected, threw themselves into everything and two Ayumu Goromaru penalties meant they trailed just 7-6 by the end of the first quarter.
But the All Blacks finally got their running game going with Cane, Smith and McCaw all scoring in quick succession for a 28-6 half-time lead.
New Zealand started the second half strongly with Thrush powering over from close range.
Taylor then replaced Carter which saw Barrett shift from fullback to first five-eighth, before Halai dived over in the corner.
The Japanese started to fall off tackles as the game wore on and some slick handling resulted in Barrett going over.
Piutau completed a good day's work to round out the scoring before the All Blacks had to dig deep in the final minutes to keep out the Japanese, who were denied a try at the death.