Ireland have defeated the All Blacks for just the second time in their history with an incredible performance from Joe Schmidt’s team seeing them 16-9 victors over the southern hemisphere giants.
A Jacob Stockdale try, with the rest of the home side’s scores coming from the boot of Jonathan Sexton gave Ireland 7 point victory, with Beauden Barrett accounting for the All Blacks nine points.
A dominant Ireland first half saw Joe Schmidt’s side enter the dressing room 9-6 at the interval. In a forty minute period where the home side had 62% possession, the level of the Irish pressure was evident in the fact that the All Blacks conceded 9 penalties in the first half, 6 of them in their own half of the field. English referee Wayne Barnes failed to deal with the constant New Zealand fouling, finally issuing a warning to Steve Hansen’s team in the dying minutes of the half.
Three Jonathan Sexton penalties and a penalty and drop goal from Beauden Barrett was the extent of the scoring in a pulsating opening period of the game. Ireland fly half Sexton put his side in front with 10 minutes on the clock, before a 37m three-pointer from Barrett levelled the score.
Shortly before Sexton’s second successful penalty, Ireland fullback Rob Kearney looked to have scored a try, only for consultation between the match officials deciding it wasn’t a five-pointer.
Beauden Barrett’s second-ever drop goal in International rugby again equalled the scores, before Sexton edged the home side three points ahead at the half time whistle.
Half time IRL 9 NZ 6
The crucial score of this game came from Ireland winger Jacob Stockdale who chipped forward along the left wing before chasing down and collecting his kick, but despite the best efforts of Aaron Smith and Damian McKenzie, the Ulsterman touched down before Sexton converted for a 16-6 lead with 50 minutes played.
Beauden Barrett got the All Blacks only score of the second half when kicking a penalty from 44m out with 68 minutes on the clock.
A dogged organised Irish performance saw them defend comfortably, especially within the final 20 minutes as the All Blacks came at them looking for the converted try they would need to sneak a draw, a score they ultimately failed to achieve.
Final score: Ireland 16 New Zealand 9