Ireland 16 New Zealand 9: How Ireland beat the All Blacks

Gavin Cummiskey looks at five key moments as Ireland claimed first home win over All Blacks

 Bundee Aki and Ian Henderson celebrate at the final whistle of the autumn international against New Zealand at the Aviva stadium. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

Bundee Aki and Ian Henderson celebrate at the final whistle of the autumn international against New Zealand at the Aviva stadium. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

a
 

1. Line in the sand – Thou shall not pass

New Zealand’s Brodie Retallick with Devin Toner of Ireland during the autumn international at the Aviva stadium. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho
New Zealand’s Brodie Retallick with Devin Toner of Ireland during the autumn international at the Aviva stadium. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

On 13 minutes, with 3-0 on the scoreboard, Brodie Retallick carries hard at the Irish line. The great All Black lock is met on the gainline by James Ryan, who hits low, and Dev Toner, who goes chest high, to send Retallick backwards into the ground. The ball spills loose and Tadhg Furlong pounces to flip up a wonderful offload that sparks an Irish counter attack.

2. Munster captain dominates

Ireland’s Peter O’Mahony is tackled by Codie Taylor and Ryan Crotty of New Zealand. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho
Ireland’s Peter O’Mahony is tackled by Codie Taylor and Ryan Crotty of New Zealand. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Peter O’Mahony made three enormous contributions. There was a phenomenal turnover on 46 minutes that led to the Irish possession before Jacob Stockdale’s try. On the hour mark he somehow got a paw around the bobbling ball a hair’s breath before Ben Smith gathered a Beauden Barrett grubber for what seemed a certain try. Best of all his turnover three minutes later, which beggared belief, left the warrior Cork man paved out and needing to be replaced.

3. The try of tries

Jacob Stockdale breaks through the tackles of Damian McKenzie and Aaron Smith to score Ireland’s try against New Zealand. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho
Jacob Stockdale breaks through the tackles of Damian McKenzie and Aaron Smith to score Ireland’s try against New Zealand. Photograph: Gary Carr/Inpho

Stockdale’s finish will be replayed forever. It was straight from the Carton House paddock with Johnny Sexton switching the play for Bundee Aki who still needed to throw a pass that only a world-class inside centre has the ability to throw. Aki nailed it but the Ulster winger still had to chip the defence and regather before holding off TJ Perenara. Special and so, so difficult to execute against any opponent.

4. The Lucky Break

Ireland’s Rob Kearney collides with with Rieko Ioane of New Zealand while going for a high ball. Photograph: Dan Sherida/Inpho
Ireland’s Rob Kearney collides with with Rieko Ioane of New Zealand while going for a high ball. Photograph: Dan Sherida/Inpho

In the 57th minute Rob Kearney, as ever, went for the dropping ball.

Rieko Ioane got up earlier and higher so clear contact by the Ireland fullback hurt the New Zealand winger, and himself, but referee Wayne Barnes was happy the contact was minimal enough to award an All Black penalty but keep his cards hidden. In the current climate, Ireland and Kearney were blessed.

5. Hammering the Hammer

Ireland’s Ulster contingent Iain Henderson, Jacob Stockdale, Rory Best and Jordi Murphy celebrate winning the game. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho
Ireland’s Ulster contingent Iain Henderson, Jacob Stockdale, Rory Best and Jordi Murphy celebrate winning the game. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

New Zealand always target the key strengths of their opponents. On 72 minutes of a seven-point Test match, with everything on the line, Iain Henderson put All Blacks captain Kieran Read into the turf with an enormous tackle deep in New Zealand territory. It felt like the moment Ireland fractured the world champions core.

a
The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.