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The International Media Reaction To Ireland's Victory Against The All Blacks

The International Media Reaction To Ireland's Victory Against The All Blacks
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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Ireland's second ever win against the All Blacks - their first on Irish soil - made an impression beyond the two countries involved. For many, the game was a precursor to next year's World Cup final.

The Guardian's Robert Kitson said that Ireland looked the best team in the world after the 80 minutes.

"Brutal does not even begin to describe the contest but, for Ireland, the outcome was as beautiful as any in their rugby history. For the first time they have beaten the All Blacks on Irish soil and not a single Kiwi can say it was undeserved. If New Zealand are still officially the world’s best team, it did not particularly feel that way at the final whistle."

And he concluded: "Can Ireland really win the World Cup? It is fast becoming a case of who can stop them."


In The Sunday Times, Stephen Jones wrote that the game was one of rare quality.

It was a wonderful, wonderful contest, and a wonderful win for Ireland in a match in which the quality and pace seemed to on a different level to the raft of other Test matches of late. Ireland’s physicality, defence, scrum and self-belief were of a sensationally high order, for a long time they imposed themselves on New Zealand, forcing the likes of Beauden Barrett and Damian McKenzie to shuffle sideways

There were superhuman performances. In their long period of Irish ascendancy, Jonny Sexton, Bundee Aki and Rob Kearney were monumental, Devin Toner gave the lie to the impression that he isd merely a line-out lanky, with a remarkable performance; Tadhg Furlong and company were dominant and Peter O’Mahony, the grey fox greying more every season, was glorious at the breakdown.

Writing for SA Rugby Mag Joe Cardinelli stated that South Africa's recent win against New Zealand, coupled with Ireland's, is changing the script of international rugby.

"Perhaps the biggest lesson to take from the recent games is that we should expect the unexpected. After watching the Boks guts it out for a win in Wellington, and after witnessing Ireland outmuscle and outsmart the All Blacks in Dublin, we have no reason to put all our faith in a script that ends with a late New Zealand surge and victory.

"Come 2019, we will be watching a different, less predictable movie. That can only be good for a game that has, until recently, been dominated by one team for too long."


In the The Telegraph, former referee, Jonathan Kaplan, thought Wayne Barnes was one of reasons why Saturday evening at the Aviva was such an enthralling affair. Though, he did not believe it to be a flawless performance from Barnes.

"The only time I disagreed with Wayne was when Kearney took out Rieko Ioane in the air. To me it is either an accidental collision and play on, or an act of dangerous play and a yellow card. Wayne awarded a penalty only and I would be interested to know how he came to that conclusion, because I certainly would have shown Kearney a yellow.

See Also: The New Zealand Media Reaction To Ireland's Victory In Dublin

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