Rugby World Cup: Schmidt admits errors left Ireland ‘chasing our tail’

Rory Best praises ‘clinical’ All Blacks after his career comes to ma close in Tokyo

Ireland captain  Rory Best  is applauded by New Zealand’s players after completing his final appearance  in the Rugby World Cup quarter-final. Photograph: Behrouz Mehri/AFP via Getty Images

Ireland captain Rory Best is applauded by New Zealand’s players after completing his final appearance in the Rugby World Cup quarter-final. Photograph: Behrouz Mehri/AFP via Getty Images

 

Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt was able to cast a cold eye on his side’s failings as his final game in charge of the national team ended in a resounding World Cup quarter-final defeat to New Zealand in Tokyo.

The 14-46 reverse against the double world champions ends Schmidt’s six years in charge with a second World Cup quarter-final defeat of his tenure, leaving Ireland still looking for a win in a knockout match in the tournament.

“It wasn’t just 32 points, it was all the ball we gave them and missed the penalties which would have given us field advantage,” said Schmidt. “It meant we were chasing our tail and they had so much ball in our half in the first half, which was tough going.”

For Ireland’s outgoing skipper Rory Best, the game represented a bitter end to his international career. He was magnanimous in defeat, however.

“The All Blacks were fantastic. We felt we had prepared well and had a game plan,” he said.

“They just came out of the blocks hard and never let us get off that again. They were just really clinical.”

All Blacks captain Kieran Read praised his side’s performance in the opening stages as they suffocated Ireland and made the most of the errors made by Schmidt’s side .

“The Irish are a great side, we have come up against them before and they have been on top,” said Read. “We knew the start was important and we did that well by getting points on board early.

“It was a heck of a Test match, really tough out there and we really felt it. It was awesome.”

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