Ireland to play three Tests in New Zealand in summer of 2022
Andy Farrell confirms his side face a first away series against All Blacks since 2012
Johnny Sexton is tackled by Conrad Smith during Ireland’s third Test defeat in New Zealand in 2012. Photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho
Andy Farrell has confirmed that Ireland will undertake a three-Test tour of New Zealand in the summer of 2022, just over a year out from the next World Cup in France.
Ireland have lost all previous 12 Tests on New Zealand soil and on their last trek there, for a first ever three-Test tour in 2012, were beaten 42-10 in Eden Park, 22-19 in Christchurch and 60-0 in Hamilton.
“I suppose we know where the journey is heading to, obviously the pool stages have just been announced and we’re heading to France. There are a few gaps along that journey that need to be filled in because of Covid etc,” said Farrell before referencing a possible two-Test tour of the Pacific Islands next summer, regular Six Nations meetings with Scotland and next year’s Lions tour of South Africa.
“There’s nothing more exciting for a player than that and then what we do know for sure at this moment in time, there’s a tour a year out from the World Cup to New Zealand which is a three-Test tour, which is obviously a massive challenge for us but the kind of challenge that we would want going into a World Cup year.
“And then hopefully we get to go to the Pacific nations in the summer, if that happens with the Covid etc, we’ll see how that works but we’re super excited about that, and then hopefully along the way in the Autumn Series that is going to come up for the next couple of years, hopefully we’ll get to play South Africa again as an Irish side.
“So like I said, the journey is mapped out, there’s a few little holes to be filled in, but it’s a big old couple of years ahead for all of us really.”