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Monday, November 22, 2010

New Zealand en route for Grand Slam after beating Ireland

New Zealand en route for Grand Slam after beating Ireland

The All Blacks continued their classy assault of the northern hemisphere with a convincing 38-18 win over Ireland at Lansdowne Road in what was the most entertaining game of the weekend.

Ireland competed valiantly for parts of the game but New Zealand managed to score tries with what looked like languid ease as they did what they do best, following the adage of letting the ball do the work.

Kieran Read crossed for two tries while second rowers Sam Whitelock and Anthony Boric each scored one. Dan Carter, looking back to his best on this tour, kicked 18 points as he came within a few points of edging Jonny Wilkinson as the highest Test points scorer of all time.

Carter has said he was keen to kick some of the opportunities at goal that captain Richie McCaw turned down. "I didn't know how many points I needed, I just wanted to take the kick," Carter said. "When I found out afterwards I gave Richie some stick about it!

McCaw, who with Mils Muliaina jointly achieved the record for All Blacks caps on the night, said that he wasnt aware of Carter being so close to the points record.

"Dan obviously knew how many points he was on because I had no idea, I wasn't thinking like that," said McCaw. "He said to me afterwards, 'Jeez, if you'd given me that I would have got the record'.

"I thought, 'Oh well, next week!'. Had I known I don't know if I'd done it any differently. The difference between a 15 and 18-point lead isn't much, so I thought we'd put the pressure on. But now I understand why he was asking for the shot at goal!"

While they lost by 20 points, one of the highlights for Ireland was an incredible try scored by midfield marvel Brian ODriscoll as he swooped down to pick up a loose ball as though he were on the training field. He scooped it up then dived over for a great try.

Flanker Stephen Ferris, who scored the first try of the game, has since questioned the All Blacks methods of slowing the ball down at the breakdown.

"If I'd been a referee I would have handed out a couple of yellow cards," said Ferris.

"It's hard because when you're in the middle of the pitch you get fast ball, but when you're in their 22 it keeps getting killed. It's the same old faces that are doing it, but they're good at it and get away with it. Richie McCaw did a great job at slowing it down. It's frustrating, but they're also good at poaching the ball legally," he added.

Ireland play Argentina next, while the All Blacks head to Wales looking for the Grand Slam.


Time: 05:34

Posted at 8:07 pm | 70 comments

Viewing 70 comments

First November 22, 2010 8:31 pm

First Mcjizz. Grand slam me thinks!

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Conor November 22, 2010 8:31 pm

Pretty disappointed with Ireland's inability to finish off trys. All Blacks made the Irish look like little boys, no completion in physicality. Frustrating to watch

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Mike November 22, 2010 8:35 pm

I thought we'd be completely mullered. We were only somewhat mullered. Happy days.

I hate this 'moral victory' stuff though. We lost, we lost, we lost. And we didn't bring through any new players.

NZ were classy, but then you expect that. Possibly the ref was a bit lenient with them in the breakdowns, but that's always debatable.

All in all, a very disappointing Autumn.

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Anonymous November 22, 2010 8:55 pm

Ferris' remarks are pretty ironic, I thought Ireland was also getting away with murder at the breakdown. Not to mention the blatant forward pass on their first try, as well as Jonkers continually letting Cian Healy collapse the scrum.

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worried November 22, 2010 9:00 pm

Not much to say about this match...

Great 30 or so minutes for Ireland (or bad for NZ) - making tackles, rushing up off the line, stopping Nonu and Gear - and then the game went as expected...

Rory Best coming off did seem to hurt Ireland as Cronin struggled to find his place after coming on.

Kearney was good for a while, but then he disappeared again. Really could've used him in attack...

The ABs simply finish tries with what appeared to be minimal effort...as if that's what they set out to do (imagine that!), as opposed to Ireland and other sides who seem to think victory is just getting to within 5m of the try zone. That fact is crippling Ireland.

Someone mentioned D'Arcy not playing well and I disagree. I thought that for once, he was making plays - the commentators even had him and BOD confused a few times when D'Arcy was throwing passes and dancing around tackles...so good on him.

Well done, NZ. But that almost goes without saying. Number 1 in world rugby for a reason...

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worried November 22, 2010 9:03 pm

Also, Cian Healy needs to stop getting fatter and focus his attention on improving his scrummaging.

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David November 22, 2010 9:05 pm

whoever wrote the blurb for this game must have been watching a different game to me. Apparently new zealand scored tries with 'languid ease' what a joke. The Irish defended very well and very physically, it was probably the most physical test match I've seen all year, and yes that includes the tri-nations. New Zealand probably put away the same proportion of their chances as Ireland, no more. Only difference was they held onto the ball a lot better and so had far more opportunities

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Anonymous November 22, 2010 9:05 pm

"The ABs simply finish tries with what appeared to be minimal effort...as if that's what they set out to do (imagine that!), as opposed to Ireland and other sides who seem to think victory is just getting to within 5m of the try zone. That fact is crippling Ireland." - worried

this paragraph makes no sense, what are you trying to say

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Douglas November 22, 2010 9:14 pm

Read really maturing into a world-class #8. This loose-forward trio should be set for the next year or so, Kaino/Read/McCaw with Messam as cover.

Whitelock also a guy looking like he will be a fixture for this NZ team for a long time. Hard to think both Franks and Whitelock are 22, both will be in that pack for a long time to come.

Thought Nonu did not play well, especially on defence. Henry will have a tough call to make b/w him or SBW this week.

Hosea Gear has to be considered the incumbent on the left wing now. His power for a guy with that much pace is pretty incredible. Smashed through Heaslip a couple of times.

Mark Keohane was also complaining about Jonkers refereeing in this game, especially at the breakdown. I was more upset with the scrum mess continuing in the second half.

Ireland just didn't seem to have that physicality to their side, POC's class is missed.

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(u-p)rick November 22, 2010 9:55 pm

'Not to mention the blatant forward pass on their first try'

ummm, excuse me if i am wrong, but i seem to remember someone saying something about a hint of an AB forward pass on one try and saying 'well ireland got away with one so we can forgive NZ that pass'


As for this game, I dont think the scoreline really reflects on irelands performance....I thought as the massive underdogs of the game they did quite well. We've obviously seen them playing better, but i thought they did well to keep the score close, but i noticed as BOD said they had a lapse in concentration for a few mins before half time and few mins after and at the end and NZ punished them big time for it.

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Third Centre November 22, 2010 10:09 pm

Good game, some positives for ireland to take out of it. Hopefully this is the start of an upward curve rather than a once-off.

However the kiwis are just pure class and they made everything they did look easy. Ireland's physicality was pretty decent i thought but their ability to keep at the same level of intensity as the kiwis went through really quick phases was poor.

Ireland have to learn how to counterattack through their back three again they kicked way too often.

Thought the ref was pretty decent but should've given at least one yellow to new zealand. At one stage McCaw was standing where the Irish 9 should've been and was attempting to take the ball. The ref was a metre away from him and did nothing. To quote ron burgundy I wasn't even angry I was just impressed.

Well done New Zealand, congrats to McCaw and Muliaina on their caps

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mise November 22, 2010 10:14 pm

Kiwis are well ahead of Irl at the mo - a few more games like that and Ireland might start to compete more.

It was, as a contest, just miles ahead in physicality than 'normal' 6N games.

Wasn't too impressed with Kearney at the back- spilled loads of times, and I fear it was for lack of physicality. Ball ripped too often.

SBW, for all the hype, was v quiet when he came on - prob a sign of decent defence by Irl (and as mentioned in the otherwise fawning match descriptino, BOD scoop and try was pure magic - where did he find that space?!?)

McCaw, after being warned, _continuously_ infringed: its just madness. Often ,I think 3N folk are a bit OTT on the McCheat stuff, but having just been at the receiving end of it (as a fan obviously!) I know where they are coming from!

Its just beggars belief really. At one point he was so far offside in a ruck I didn't really understand what he was doing. He was about 170 degrees offside, so it looked like I was watching a joke rerun/reedit, where someone was spliced into the TV picture by a post production editor after the match or sth - literally bizarrely cheeky. The result? another pen, nothing more.

And this _after_ the last one he gave away after the warning.

I know refs don't like carding captains, but is a joke at this stage. He's bringing the game down, and refs are letting themselves down. Yes he gets away with it, but getting away with it isn't the whole story in sport or in life.
Yes Irl collaposed the scrum a few times, but the balance was 70-30 dodgy ref decisions. And sadly, its a patterns, so can't just be put down to being an anomaly.

Seems like the conspirators are right: Kiwis are getting preferential treatment as they are a top brand, their coaches know it and play for it, their players do too and are acting a bit arrogantly because of it.

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worried November 22, 2010 10:24 pm

"this paragraph makes no sense, what are you trying to say"

What am I trying to say? How many times did Ireland get to the NZ red zone and fail to score? Not only against NZ, they do it game after game. Now how about NZ? Boric's try, Read's try, and Whitelock's try were all finsihed so easy - it was simple rugby, done well.

Even Ferris acknowledged it. You give NZ and inch, and they'll take a mile. One small defensive mistake and they turn it into 5 points. They make it look frustratingly easy.

Yes, Ireland's defense stepped up for this game - it had to if it didn't want to end up like Scotland. But the fact that Ireland couldn't sustain that for the full 80m is what led to the small errors that led to tries.

And I agree with (u-p)rick: Ireland's performance was much better this time around and despite losing by 20 points, they were still impressive at times.

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themull November 22, 2010 10:26 pm

Ireland matched them with physicality but simply could not compete with the quick ball they produced, particularly off counter attacks.....

As has been said the Refs really do need to start handing down yellows for teams who continously commit penalties within their own 22, as was the case in this game....

it was finally good to see a bit of pashion back in the Irish side, but at the same time, I'm still fed up with our mentality...I mean our press was hailing it as a good result when in reality we just got beat by 20 points on our home pitch...

Well done NZ, well done carter and McCaw...Reid and Jane also played very well...For Ireland Bod and ferris stood out most for me....

Hopefully we see another great game with Arg next week and also that Wales can really test NZ....

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The Other Conor November 22, 2010 10:36 pm

I thought Ireland played very well they attacked quite well for 30 odd minutes and defended very well for 30 odd minutes all and all and if the game was only 60 minutes long they would of played it to the wire, alas its an 80minute game and for that extra 20 minutes the All Black where pure class. I would of however, liked to have seen what would have happened if Jonkers had any balls and actually sent McCaw to the sin bin (for one of the numerous offence he committed) Having said that both teams chanced their arms throughout the whole match, and got away with murder at times.
What can I say though we lost to the All Blacks (again) its not a shame to lose against the best team in the sport.
I think both Bowe and Fitzgerald never really got into the game as much as they would have liked too, Wallace looked second rate against McCaw and was probably the least impressive Irish player.
Cronin was shaky when he came on but saved himself with some strong running and cleaned his throwing up. D'Arcy what can I say when I wrote him off he turns around and has one of the games of his season, BRING THAT "A" GAME ALL THE TIME D'Arcy! Some uncharacteristic errors from BOD before and after half time is it all downhill from here for BOD? We've said this before haven't we? Sexton played well some good kicks out of hand and only missed one from the tee. Redden played well I still think Boss or Stringer should of been on the team.
I was impressed but we still lost. I don't think the score actually shows how close the game actually was but Ireland have to focus on playing for 80minutes and bringing the intensity for the 80minutes.

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The Other Conor November 22, 2010 10:44 pm

Also Kearney meh... Still thing a Fitzy 15 Bowe 14 Earls 11 would have been a better backline. And Court will you please run into a tackle to prevent Boruc's try in the first half not just watch him dive over and then fall on the ground beside him when he touches down..thanks!

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JM November 22, 2010 10:44 pm

As an Ieland fan there is no doubt NZ are a better team and deserved to win.

I don't think Ferris' comment was out of line. I don't hink he is claiming that Ireland would have won....but you don't have to be a genius to figure out that NZ, for some reason, do seem to get away with multiple infringments without cards....whereas other teams do not.

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POW November 22, 2010 10:49 pm

Ireland were lucky to escape with just a 20 point loss, the AB's could/should have scored at least one other time.

Plus the first try to Ireland was CLEARLY a forward pass.

Still people bitch about McCaw, just accept he will always play that style of game just like Brussow and Pocock do. It's their job to attack the break down and disrupt the opponents ball.

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Dana November 22, 2010 10:52 pm

David,
As much as I enjoyed this game...as a allblack supporter, I have to say you are wrong in saying this was the most physical game of the year.... I would have to say it was the Saffa AB game in Soccer City....Thats my honest opinion anyway. I just felt this game lack the intensity that game had.

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Anonymous November 22, 2010 10:52 pm

The only way to have a prayer against the ABs--if you can't match their unreal conditioning and aggressiveness--is to (1) have loose forwards that are fit and fleet of foot and (2) have locks that can man-mark the flankers. You gotta have the loose forwards busting lines with backing if you want to get quick ball inside the 22 metre line. And you have to have locks that can get to the breakdown quickly and put in a boot to stop those naughty flankers putting their hands into the cupboard.

As a former lock, I know that it's tempting to look at all those props piled one on top the other and pause for thought as to whether you really want to put your face in their arses (again). But you're primarily responsible for the second phase of a ruck (if needed, and if you haven't made the tackle). That means giving a shove, putting the head down, and rucking hard. I can't tell you how many turnovers I got at age level simply by having good active feet on the counter or how many flankers left a ruck looking as though they'd given Catwoman a right good shag.

Too often you see a lock standing round looking exasperated, pleading with the referee as Kepp'n McCaw (rugby's equivalent of the Hamburgler) goes rummaging around followed by a violent knee and/or stamp after the ball is killed (heck, even his own mate, Ali Williams, did him one during Super 14). That just ain't gonna cut it if you want to seriously challenge the AB pack.

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Agree November 22, 2010 10:54 pm

@POW I couldn't agree more. That pass was SO far forward and yet the Irish commentary just casually continue on with their conversation!

If it was an AB who threw that pass, they would have replayed it 6 times before the conversion was taken.

However I guess it would the same if the game was being played in NZ. The home commentary and camera's will always lean toward their team.

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Link November 22, 2010 11:02 pm

Stop arguing, so pointless.

Anyways, great game to watch. Ireland need to improve on finishing and just over fitness IMHO.



Cheers

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Anonymous November 22, 2010 11:07 pm

haha yea then the commentary has the nerve to question that pass from McCaw to Whitelock. Typical.

Just a reminder of how petty the Irish are when things don't go to plan;

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsXJyDHFKn0

For christ sake, they created an entire TV show to cry about the AllBacks!!

View Video

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mise November 22, 2010 11:12 pm

@agree
The commentator isn't Irish. That wasn't Irish TV.
The Irish commentators called it on Irish TV.
And, there actually was one by NZ equally obvious.

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Agree November 22, 2010 11:17 pm

@Mise, my mistake. What was that commentary? And where was the "Equally" forward pass from the AB's?

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Jono November 22, 2010 11:22 pm

That Ferris try was a mile forward.
The All Blacks did not score of a similar pass at all.
Irleand lucky to be as close on the score board as they were.
I don't expect much from this irish team at the world cup.

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Canadian Content November 22, 2010 11:27 pm

Thought Wallace looked like the weak link in the Irish backrow. To be honest, beyond powerful running, he doesn't offer much.

BOD on the other hand, continues to amaze me. No he is not as fast as he once was, but his handling is sublime. That audacious floater pass he gave Reddan in the first half should have led to something more (instead Reddan kicked it into Muliania's face).

That try topped it all, not many players in the world who can still do that.

And I am sorry but D'arcy has got to go. Offers little threat with the ball in hand and definitely is not a consistent gainline maker.

My question is do Ireland have another 7 and 12?

In regards to the back three, that blond boy from Connacht should get a run as well

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mise November 22, 2010 11:45 pm

@agree:
Dodgy forward pass, by, wait for it, McCaw, at 3.10.
Commentator sounds a little bit welsh, midly so. Not full on accent - maybe from close to the English border?!? Or long left Wales? Overall I'd say welsh ,thou others may know.

(Co-commentator is irish actually, but his comments may or may not have gone on longer - they usually speak after the action - of course they should have spotted it in gen- v clear, thou they may have mentioned it in replays of course)

In general,I've always noticed how the irish commentators, on Irish TV at any rate, are painstakingly less biased than most nationalities: I'm sure many ppl think this of 'their own'and while its difficult to be objective of course on this, they seem achingly middle class in their desire to over compensate and be polite.

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Anonymous November 22, 2010 11:50 pm

ireland admittedly have a long way to go before being the same standard as the ABs but BOD is still a better player than any other I have ever seen, I think that annoys the kiwis.

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Yuri November 22, 2010 11:53 pm

I dont know what the big deal about o'driscoll is? The only time i noticed him was when he scored that try. I watch other games and still dont notice him doing anything spectacular.

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fry November 23, 2010 12:00 am

To be fair, the pass to Ferris was definitely forward, while the pass to Whitelock looked possibly forward but probably flat.

Either way, Jonker missed them, so it doesn't really matter now.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 12:00 am

The McCaw pass to Whitelock nowhere near the level of the first Irish try -- if you watch, Whitelock goes back for the ball. That first try by Ire was crazy, how did the ref or TJ not spot that?

Re: conditioning, it is amazing how much the ABs back their fitness. They play the game at pace for the full 80, always with the belief that the other team simply won't have the conditioning to match them. Most times, they're correct.

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The Other Conor November 23, 2010 12:03 am

Have to agree with Canadian Content on that one get Fionn Carr onto that team, NOW!

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Jono November 23, 2010 12:09 am

Why woudl it annoy NZ that BOD is a good player?
That's a very strange thing to say.
As if the All Blacks don't have plenty of good centres! Conrad Smith is a superb centre, they don't need an ageing BOD.
In regards to commentators, they're all pretty bias, and ireland aren't the worst, but they're certainly not the best. They're about as one-eyed as most commentators.
Probably the best commentators, in my opinion, are the Saffers strangly.
They seem pretty even handed to me.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 12:10 am

"If it was an AB who threw that pass, they would have replayed it 6 times before the conversion was taken."

As said, the commentators weren't Irish. And when the ABs did score off a forwards pass, the commentators didn't make a big deal about it.

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Truth Hurts November 23, 2010 12:11 am

@Anon BOD would not even make it into the AB's touring squad. Nonu/SBW/Smith/Toeava with Kahui and McAlister still at home injured...

BOD would struggle for a super rugby contract outside of the highlanders.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 12:16 am

"I dont know what the big deal about o'driscoll is? The only time i noticed him was when he scored that try. I watch other games and still dont notice him doing anything spectacular"

The young O' Driscoll was the flashy try scoring type of player. Now he's older and slower but smarter. He sets up other players (look at the loops which broke the AB line once or twice), he poaches (look at his try) and he rucks / tries to steal ball like a forwards and he puts in a smart kick from time to time (although he made one terrible kick in this match, but that was a rarity). He doesn't get as much praise or emphasis as he should.

Nonu is similar in my opinion. Nobody really mentioned it, but he was the reason the Irish line was on the back foot most of the time. He targeted the two Irish centres repeatedly, running diagonally instead of straight and creatine space for the rest of the AB back line. If the Irish team had drifted more and put 6 / 7 / 8 in the backs to deal with Nonu, Ireland would have fared much better.

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DH November 23, 2010 12:52 am

@Truth Hurts, Yeah you're spot-on there, I'd much rather have Kahui in the Irish team instead of BOD. In fact, given that BOD is our best centre I think we should leave him and Tommy Bowe out of the 22 if we make a World Cup quarter-final. That worked out really well for one of the teams at the last RWC, I can't quite recall which one...

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 12:55 am

Thanks RD, always interesting to hear different commentary, simple fact is ALL commentators and fans are bias, makes me wonder why we dont have 1 commentator from each country represented...

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 1:09 am

@DH are you eluding to the AB's leaving Conrad smith and Howlett out of the quarter final in 07?

If so, yes poor decisions.... But Kahui wasn't at the last world cup you goose.

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DH November 23, 2010 1:24 am

I actually forgot about Smith, it was Mauger and Howlett I was alluding to.

I only mentioned Kahui because the original poster mentioned six centres he'd have in the NZ squad ahead of BOD, him being one of them.

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jrsONE November 23, 2010 1:28 am

I have no issue acknowledging that the ABs being superior in almost every other facet of the game through skill and ability, but McCaw is seriously aided by the refs when it comes to the breakdown.

Firstly, Pocock and Brussow, and any other #7's you want to name, don't infringe anywhere near as much as McCaw.

Anyone who tries to justify McCaw getting away with murder at the breakdown with the old 'everyone is doing it' argument is simply biased and wants McCaw to continue breaking the rules and going un-penalised. AB fans aren't here to be objective supporters of the game, just to gloat.

Hopefully all other fans can accept that the breakdown laws weren't devised the way they were so that they could be ignored.

(cue comments from NZ about 'whinging opposition fans' and 'sore losers')

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Jayceon November 23, 2010 2:24 am

Stop whinging jrsONE lol

Not everyone that comments on here about the all blacks are from NZ. 95% of the time its just some loser trolling.

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Noms November 23, 2010 2:41 am

@DH yea 2007 world cup was a shambles from the AB's. So much rotation.... I forgot they left Mauger out as well.

All to accommodate Mr "Up and Under" Leon McDonald... :-(

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 3:07 am

I hate to make excuses for the lads in the middle, but the speed of test rugby is immense. The decisions a referee has to make when he sees Kepp'n McCaw lunge at the ball are as follows:

(1) Is he off his feet? (He can be on top of the lad rummaging about, but no knees on deck)

(2) Did he have hand on ball before an attempted ruck?

If (1), then clear penalty. If (2), then McCaw has every right to be wherever he wants to be around the ball as he's got his hands on it. If anything, the tackled player should be penalized for not releasing if a "slow ball" situation occurs. If he didn't, then he has to retire or return behind the offside line.

If you notice, Richie is a wise old dog, and every time he tackles a player or he comes in to the breakdown, he always puts his hands right by the ball, which makes the referee hesitate. Also, it doesn't help that a lot of teams try to out-mongrel the ABs and they come in with shoulder charges rather than proper rucking technique. Blowing a boy off the ruck without binding him does not a ruck make.

The ABs always make the breakdown a frenzied scene, and I don't envy the referee who has to sort it out in blinks of an eye. When the ol' Kepp'n is engaging in cynical fouling, however, he needs to go and cool his heels for 10 minutes. Ireland should have been up a man for a bit there--rather unfair.

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jim brown November 23, 2010 4:03 am

(2) doesn't apply if his hands are preventing the ball from being played/released from the moment the tackle is made, though.

But you're right in that the AB's are great at rucking/counter-rucking legally, which makes it all-the-more difficult to referee against the times they foul as well.

The problem is that the ref already warned NZ about infringements, especially within their red zone, but neglected to punish them further...oh well...c'est la vie.

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(u-p)rick November 23, 2010 4:35 am

off your feet now is actually when any other body part is (here i forget) either supporting your weight or touching the ground....

as for this game i doubt many comments on here are from NZ fans...

The irish COULD have lost by more, just as the AB's COULD have won by less.....a lot of ifs coulds etc...the irish closed the game down, slowed NZ down and stopped them from scoring so much, as stated above the scoreline did not really reflect the game....NZ punished ireland when their concentration lapsed!

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Bill November 23, 2010 4:43 am

That's the problem, trying to shut down the All Blacks is a losing strategy.
The only way to beat them is to take them on and just go athem hell for leather, like Aus, SA and France occaisonally have success doing.

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Simon7 November 23, 2010 6:20 am

Good game to watch and I thought Ireland played well. Good luck for the 6 nations lads.

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Chris November 23, 2010 8:29 am

It's going to hurt bad when the french spoil the party in New Zealand in the WC.
As usual the ABs are put on a pedestal all year before the WC before they realize that with a good preparation the level of most teams improve significantly.
And then they go home crying like babies. At least this time they won't have a 20 hours flight

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Dub in Oz November 23, 2010 8:45 am

Let's have Fitzgerald at full back. He played there all his life til he came to senior level and has said he's desperate to be given a go there. He is clearly not a winger but defensively he's class. And someone else at 7 and let's see McFadden.

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Von November 23, 2010 9:16 am

Mise said...
Commentator sounds a little bit welsh, midly so. Not full on accent - maybe from close to the English border?!? Or long left Wales? Overall I'd say welsh ,thou others may know.


It's Eddie Butler. He may only sound mildly Welsh - in fact, you're very accurate in that he's from close to the English border - but he IS very Welsh. If you've never heard Eddie Butler commentating on a Wales rugby game, then you've never really experienced the essence of true one-eyed bias!!!

Anyway, he only asked the question "was it forward" re McCaw's pass to Whitelock. It was in fact perfectly legal. What impressed me was the big lock's agility in checking his run to collect the pass and still getting up enough speed to beat 2-3 defenders on his sprint to the line.

Ireland were excellent for the first 35 minutes, but they were then simply outclassed. I got the sense during that first half hour that, yes, NZ were being tested probably more than they had so far this tour, but the upset never really seemed to be on the cards. They showed a lot of patience and experience to just keep on chipping away, go through phases, keep the ball alive etc. As a couple of people have already mentioned, simple rugby brilliantly executed.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 9:18 am

This site is sooooo slow with all the adverts. It's one thing making money to run it but this is getting rediculous. No more big flashy adverts please RD...it takes too long to load - makes me not bother coming.

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JDG November 23, 2010 9:21 am

Chris, how old are you, 2?

Any chance we could just talk about the rugby without this silly childish talk?

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H November 23, 2010 9:40 am

If you think Irelands defensive efforts were outstanding then check out Reids last try and check how many covering players 'bust a gut' to get across.. Stringer even looks like he's just heading off the pitch. Corner flagging? Yes. Urgently? No.

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Adrian November 23, 2010 10:56 am

Isn't Ferris a number 6?

Rather than standing back and pointing at All Blacks slowing down Irish ball, maybe he should concentrate on getting his butt to the next ruck and driving the all blacks off the ball.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 1:34 pm

I know we got beaten well, but proud of their performance - they played well and was a good exciting game of rugby to watch.

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David November 23, 2010 2:03 pm

Thats completely part of Irelands game too, killing the ball. So i doubt ferris should complain too much ^^.

Not looking forward to saturday, If anyone thinks ireland got mullered wait till you see the all blacks play us.

Wales are going to get destroyed... but then we always seem to play best when we have no chance. so who knows..

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 2:27 pm

Over/Under on the # of silly scuffles Mike Phillips will start? That always seems to be his strategy when his side is facing a loss, so I expect nothing different this week.

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DJ November 23, 2010 2:35 pm

frustrating game to watch from an irish point of view but great game all the same. if the irish cancelled out all their mistakes, or the vast maority they would've won(you'll probably laugh at that but thats how i saw it). and as for jamie heaslip, how the hell did he not learn his lesson against the boks!!!???!!! why oh why didn't he pass to earls for a run in?? BEYOND ME. i thought for once in a long time that the leinster players let the side down except for bod and d'arcy(at times). and why is kidney doing the same thing as eos?? new players please!! at least we'll get some this week but ofcourse only because of injuries

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 4:50 pm

"Thats completely part of Irelands game too, killing the ball. So i doubt ferris should complain too much ^^."

It used to be until the rules changed. Although, slowing the ball was much more part of every teams' game until the rules changed.

Still, I think NZ did deserve a yellow. I was surprised that McCaw wasn't carded.

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Mike November 23, 2010 5:42 pm

McCaw has been carded once in an international game. This is not a criticism of McCaw at all, he's clearly a great player. It is a criticism of referees.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 5:57 pm

The other Conor

It was Healy who missed the tackle on Boric. How people think he's international standard is beyond me. All the conversation has been about tight head, but Healy just shouldn't be there. Oh, but he's young and needs to develop you say! Dan Cole is younger, has to fight Castro for the same position at Leicester, has a season less than Healy and is already top 3 tight heads in the world. Yet Healy is a certainity in every newspaper and programme.

How many needless pens has he given away too. Must be the highest in squad.

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Anonymous November 23, 2010 7:42 pm

Beats me how Geordan Murphy doesn't get in ahead of Rob Kearney at FB. Or indeed Fitzgerald

The opposition don't worry about Kearney running back at them. Just wait for his hop skip prior to contact, no attempt to offload, and then take it off him! Sheesh.

Fyi, the co-commentator on the BBC was Philip Matthews

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(u-p)rick November 23, 2010 8:01 pm

@ Bill, i know what you mean about going out for the kill, for instance look at scots going at SA, but i think they were lucky that SA were somewhat lost otherwise it could have ended very badly, however scotlands defence is generally very strong...

As for ireland, i dont beleive they have the ability to go at NZ hell for leather, i think they would have fumbled NZ would have recovered the ball with a nice long stretch to the try line....so i think Ireland did what they could and slowed the game down...

@ H (i think it was) if you watched the game the defence by the irish was generally very good, it came as quite a shock when the AB's scored quick tries right after half time. Although as stated (numerous times) by myself, others and BOD (after the game) they had a moment of concentration lapse and each time NZ punished them big time!

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mr. orange November 23, 2010 8:21 pm

I completely agree with you, DJ. What's going to be worse is if/when Kidney fields names the WC side and it still hasn't changed. That would make my heart sink into my stomach, I think.

The saddest part about it is that even though Ireland lack the depth SA and NZ possess, they do have players capable of taking the job from those who have underperformed, and yet they still haven't been given a chance. Baffling...

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westman November 23, 2010 8:37 pm

I really enjoyed the game Ireland played 100% better. if they play like this in 6 nations they could win it. If any thing this game should how much ireland are missing POC O'leary and flannery . I think O'leary would have done a lot better with that break redden had .
Darcy played a lot better and tackled his ass off but i would love to see Earls Fits or BOW(never going to happen do) get a chance at center.

As for New Zealand what a team if there is even a sniff of try they take it pure class. There support play and off loading is unreal they make it look so easy . now that the rest of teams have players just as big and strong New Zealand have changed into a lighter but way fitter team and keep the speed of the game at 100% for the 80mins.

Ireland have great backs and could play a hi tempo off loading game like New Zealand but a few new forwards would be nice but the WC is to soon and Ireland wont change game plan now.

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Anonymous November 24, 2010 12:32 am

Don'y know if IRB have nominated pplayer of the year, but Read and Conrad Smith should be on it.

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murph November 24, 2010 2:59 pm

The pass from Heaslip to Ferris was so forward that when I first saw it I seriously thought Heaslip had put it on the boot.

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Anonymous November 25, 2010 2:21 am

god its great beating those Irish Sooks, at least they'll have something new to cry about a while.

Nothing like a dublin sniffle. LOL

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