All Blacks survive early pressure to hand Irish six-try rout

Source: 1News

Relive our live updates of tonight's Test match between the All Blacks and Ireland at Eden Park in Auckland.

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FT: NZL 42-19 IRE

The maul collapses and the ball dies. That does it from the Garden of Eden and the fortress stands tall once more! All Blacks managed to take over this game after plenty of pressure early on and took their moments when they came. Great night at No.10 for Barrett which will add another chapter to his interesting battle with Mo'unga. His brother Scott had a much better evening at No.6 than his last outing in that jersey too. But the biggest difference tonight was the set piece as the All Blacks forwards found advantages at both the scrum and lineout. Add that to an impressive goal line defence and a Sexton-less Ireland really struggled to make an indent.

That's all from us for tonight. Have a great weekend.

80+3min: NZL 42-19 IRE

Ireland looking to finish this game on a high but the All Blacks' defence isn't making it easy... neither is the referee's whistle. Fun fact, All Blacks have made 196 tackles tonight. They've only missed 15.

78min: NZL 42-19 IRE

NZL YELLOW! Tu'inukuafe is sent to the bin as the straw that broke the camel's [or in this case, referee's] back for the All Blacks' poor discipline. Sour finish to the game really.

77min: NZL 42-19 IRE

IRE TRY! Finally Ireland win the battle at the tryline and it's the physical injection of Bundee Aki that gets it done. The former All Black hopeful hits the line and manages to bust through it from close.

75min: NZL 42-12 IRE

IRE NO TRY! The All Blacks' goal line defence gets it done again! Held up over the line so it's a goal line dropout. Irish will be frustrated with how little they've converted in that area tonight.

74min: NZL 42-12 IRE

Ireland have a chance to finish on a high here. They earn another penalty and kick for the corner. Irish lineout 5m from the All Blacks' line.

73min: NZL 42-12 IRE

The teams trade kicks and eventually Jordie finds touch to win the duel. Irish lineout 5m inside their half.

71min: NZL 42-12 IRE

NZL TRY! SOWAKULA WITH A TRY ON DEBUT! All Blacks with a good hit on the scrum, get going forward and Sowakula uses the momentum to take it off the back and sprint in under the posts effectively untouched. Welcome to international rugby, Pita Gus!

68min: NZL 35-12 IRE

Follow up penalty and again, being 5m out and in the middle of the field, the All Blacks choose the scrum.

67min: NZL 35-12 IRE

All Blacks get a penalty and look to put the final nail in the coffin as Barrett kicks for the corner. All Blacks lineout now just 10m from the Irish line.

65min: NZL 35-12 IRE

Ball must be getting slippery as both sides are struggling to hold onto it now. The latest error means the All Blacks will have another scrum, although it's much closer to their line this time - about 15m out, in fact.

63min: NZL 35-12 IRE

All Blacks swarm the Irish maul and the ball is trapped! That means it'll be an All Blacks scrum and the pack is pumped! Pats on the back all around as they settle down for the scrum with the latest All Black at the back - Pita Gus Sowakula.

62min: NZL 35-12 IRE

Here's an interesting one. Mo'unga is on the field for Tupaea so it looks like Beauden has shifted to fullback, Jordie is up to second-five and Mo'unga will take over at No.10! Meanwhile, the clearance from the scrum gives Ireland a lineout on the All Blacks' 22.

60min: NZL 35-12 IRE

IRE NO TRY! Ireland go for a quick tap! They hit the All Blacks line. It doesn't work. They hit it again. Still doesn't work! THEY GO A THIRD TIME AND THEY'RE OVER! Ref initially gives the try but replays show who else but Rieko Ioane forcing the knock on as Ireland go to score! So five points wiped and the All Blacks have a scrum on their 5m.

58min: NZL 35-12 IRE

IRE NO TRY! Ireland with an advantage for offside go for the line out wide but Rieko Ioane has gotten across for a superb try-saving tackle! They go up to the TMO to check the grounding and Ioane has done enough to disrupt it and force knock on! So no try for now but we come back for the advantage.

56min: NZL 35-12 IRE

Ireland are right back on the attack as they get a penalty off the restart. Kick for the corner and it's a 10m lineout from the All Blacks line.

54min: NZL 35-12 IRE

NZL TRY! ARDIE SAVEA WITH SOME INDIVIDUAL BRILLIANCE! Shakes off his tackler, steps inside the other nearby defender, turns on the afterburners, he's got 30m to go. Brushes off another diving tackler, steps inside the last tackler left and goes the rest of the way to score. Sensational from the powerful No.8. Simply sensational.

52min: NZL 28-12 IRE

And all that goes to waste as the All Blacks are penalised for an early push. Could those three points become a talking point later? Time will tell as Ireland kicks for touch with the free kick. All Blacks still on the attack with a lineout 35m from the Irish line.

51min: NZL 28-12 IRE

Couple of resets and it's another All Blacks penalty for a collapsed scrum. Cane wants to stay here though so we pack down again.

49min: NZL 28-12 IRE

All Blacks win the lineout and move it quickly. They earn another penalty as the Irish are scrambling to set. No advantage so we'll take it and with it smack bang in the middle of the field and 5m out, Cane calls for a scrum!

48min: NZL 28-12 IRE

Ireland were back on the attack with a penalty after the restart but a sloppy lineout gives the All Blacks the ball on halfway. Slowly make their way towards Ireland's 22 when the pressure becomes too much and Ireland give up the penalty for hands in the ruck. Great phases from the All Blacks. Interesting call from Cane here. They turn down the three and go for the corner. All Blacks lineout 10m from the line.

45min: NZL 28-12 IRE

IRE TRY! Great patience from Ireland and they finally get the reward out wide. They hit the All Blacks line again and again with the forwards but can't find the hole so they move it wide and Ringrose dives for the corner to score.

42min: NZL 28-5 IRE

Perfect start for Ireland. They get the penalty and, sensing the situation at hand, turn down the three on offer and kick for the corner. Irish lineout 10m from the All Blacks' line.

40min: NZL 28-5 IRE

We're back underway at a rocking Garden of Eden.

HT: NZL 28-5 IRE

Rieko Ioane and Ardie Savea celebrate a try against Ireland.

That's the first half in the books as Barrett thumps it into touch.

It was all Ireland early on in this match but following Sexton's departure for an HIA check, the All Blacks saw a bit of discord from the Irish and they have capitalised BIG time. A strong half from Beauden Barrett has helped the attacking flair shine and Quinn Tupaea, thrust into the starting midfield role following this week's Covid outbreak, has looked comfortable right there alongside him.

We've got word it's even worse news for the Irish as they head to the sheds. Sexton failed his HIA check - he won't be back tonight.

Stay with us, we'll bring you the second half of action shortly!

39min: NZL 28-5 IRE

NZL TRY! SMITH AND SAVEA MAKE THEM PAY! Smith makes a break from the ruck and bursts into the backfield. No one around him but the fullback so he chips over him and the chase is on to the line! Smith gets there but he's falling so he smacks it backwards. Irish scrambling to get to him but leave the ball behind and Savea jumps on it in-goal to score. What a period of play from the All Blacks!

37min: NZL 21-5 IRE

All Blacks with one last attacking chance here before the break. Ireland are penalised off the restart and so Barrett finds touch on halfway for a lineout.

36min: NZL 21-5 IRE

NZL TRY! The All Blacks make the turnover at the ruck after the lineout and immediately they strike! It comes to Beauden Barrett who spots the space, grubbers it through and Quinn Tupaea makes the perfect read to beat everyone to it. He's under the posts. Superb read from Barrett and even better timing on the run from Tupaea. All Blacks on fire!

34min: NZL 14-5 IRE

What a momentum swing! The All Blacks have come to life off that and are moving the ball around the park. They get up to halfway but are penalised for not releasing. Ireland try a quick-tap penalty but it costs them as Cane SMASHES his opposite and forces a knock on. All Blacks on the counter attack. Barrett kicks one through and it's into touch. Irish lineout 15m from their line. What a sequence! Irish look a little lost without their captain and talisman Sexton on the field - he's off with an HIA at the moment.

31min: NZL 14-5 IRE

NZL TRY! SEVU REECE GOES THE LENGTH OF THE FIELD! After coughing up the ball at the lineout, the Irish get back on the attack and start working towards the All Blacks line. However, they once again come back to the left and the ball is loose. Reece pounces on it and he's gone. No one catches that man in open space.

28min: NZL 7-5 IRE

Smith slips as he looks to make the clearing kick and the Irish are back on the attack. Eventually comes to the left wing again and there's another bobble. All Blacks with another lineout in the same spot - just outside their 22.

26min: NZL 7-5 IRE

It takes a few resets but finally the Irish get it out. They attack on the right but the All Blacks read it well and force the ball into touch. All Blacks lineout just outside their 22.

23min: NZL 7-5 IRE

Sloppy restart from the All Blacks and the Irish are right back on the attack with a scrum 35m from the All Blacks line.

22min: NZL 7-5 IRE

NZL TRY! Jordie Barrett flies over the line! It's a superb ball from Whitelock of all people that makes the space. Tupaea moves it on to Fainga'anuku and he puts on the afterburners down the left wing but is brought down inches short from scoring on debut! Smith recycles quickly and finds Jordie Barrett who attacks the broken Irish line and is in. Converts his own try too.

20min: NZL 0-5 IRE

Well, just as the All Blacks are starting to build some momentum and string together eight phases, the Irish knock it on looking for a turnover. All Blacks scrum 30m from the Irish line.

17min: NZL 0-5 IRE

Irish turn for a sloppy lineout. Knock on leads to a scrum. All Blacks feed 10m inside their own half.

16min: NZL 0-5 IRE

Ireland turn it over shortly after the lineout and attack down the left side. They use another clever kick to find space behind the All Blacks line but Beauden Barrett gets back in time to recover the ball. He gets just outside the in-goal area. With him out of action though, Fainga'anuku is called on to clear the ball and he does. Ireland with a lineout 35m from the All Blacks line now.

14min: NZL 0-5 IRE

Pressure averted as the All Blacks pack earns a penalty at the scrum! Tuungafasi is the one getting the pats on the back as he's made his opposite buckle. Barrett kicks for touch and it's an All Blacks lineout 10m inside the Irish half.

12min: NZL 0-5 IRE

All Blacks are under pressure now as Ireland earn another scrum but this one is on the All Blacks' 22m. It's one way traffic so far.

10min: NZL 0-5 IRE

Time is off as Cane gets smoked by a big Irish hit and stays down. He lost the ball in the contact so when we start again it's an Irish scrum 10m from halfway in their own half.

9min: NZL 0-5 IRE

Ireland clear from the restart but again don't find touch. That starts another Kick duel which ends with an All Blacks lineout 10m from halfway.

7min: NZL 0-5 IRE

IRE TRY! Ireland earn a penalty shortly after the lineout as the All Blacks are offside. Sexton gets them a lineout deep in All Blacks territory with it. They get the ball rolling and into the 22 they go with the forwards. It stays in the forwards. Five metres out now. They stay in the forwards still. It's 18 phases before they get a penalty advantage! Ball comes wide now and Ireland are over with Earls on the right wing.

3min: NZL 0-0 IRE

The sides trade kicks until the All Blacks win the duel with Beauden Barrett running it back over halfway. The ball is moved quickly to the right, Jordie Barrett chips one through but there's a bit too much on it and it goes out. Ireland lineout 10m from their own try line.

1min: NZL 0-0 IRE

Ireland lets the ball bounce from kickoff but manage to recover it. All Blacks attack at the ruck but there's a knock on going for the ball. Early look at the scrum coming up just outside the Irish 22.

KICKOFF:

Referee Karl Dickson gives the whistle and Beauden Barrett gets us going. Test Rugby is back at Eden Park!

7:05pm:

Sam Cane back at the head of the arrow for the first haka of the year. Aaron Smith leads it and there's plenty of fire in it. We're in for a thriller tonight!

7:00pm:

The Irish anthem is first and there's plenty of voices joining in in the crowd. Great anthem. Great people. Kiwi anthem is up next and there's just as much passion and pride from the Fortress. Leicester Fainga'anuku soaking it in.

6:58pm:

And here they come! Massive roar from the crowd as the two sides take the field. Special moment for Sam Whitelock as he officially becomes the second-most-capped All Black of all time, surpassing Keven Mealamu with his 133rd cap. Only the great Richie McCaw is ahead of him.

6:55pm:

We're just waiting for the players to come out. It's a crisp evening in Auckland - just 11 degrees but little to no wind about and no sight of rain so we should get some good, attacking footy!

6:45pm:

A chipper Jack Goodhue, fresh out of isolation after getting caught up in the All Blacks' mini Covid outbreak earlier this week, has told 1News on the Eden Park pitch the team is determined to put their poor end to last year behind them - including that tough loss in Dublin.

"We didn't finish the year like we wanted to... they dominated us all around the field," Goodhue said.

"This is a really good chance for us to come out and start 2022 strong and build towards next year's World Cup."

6:40pm:

There's a special atmosphere building at Eden Park. A sellout crowd is on the menu tonight with it being the biggest rugby crowd we've had since the 2017 Lions Tour. You can bet it's not going to be a pure sea of black though. The Irish are in the house and with them are plenty of passionate, diehard fans. With no rain [currently] overhead, it's all building to a big evening!

6:30pm:

Winger Leicester Fainga’anuku has been named to make his test debut as part of a Covid-hit All Blacks team in Saturday’s first rugby test against Ireland.

For the visitors, flyhalf Johnny Sexton will captain an experienced and consistent Ireland lineup in his 106th test match and combine with New Zealand-born scrumhalf Jamison Gibson-Park .

Fainga’anuku was one of the standout players for the Crusaders team which won the inaugural Super Rugby Pacific title this season and will start on the left wing while his Crusaders teammate Sevu Reece will start on the right in the match at Auckland's Eden Park.

Reece takes over that position from Will Jordan who is one of three All Blacks backs who currently are out of action with Covid-19. Fainga’anuku has been preferred on the left wing ahead of Blues winger Caleb Clarke who recently has been sidelined with a hamstring injury.

Head coach Ian Foster, who has been cleared to join the team at Eden Park after isolating this week with Covid, has named Rieko Ioane and Quinn Tupaea in midfield, favouring that combination after centers David Havili and Jack Goodhue both tested positive.

Beauden Barrett has been named ahead of Richie Mo’unga at flyhalf, though Mo’unga had the upper hand when the two met for the Crusaders and Blues respectively in the Super Rugby final.

Scott Barrett, who captained the Crusaders this season from lock, will start on the blindside flank as the All Blacks anticipate a physical contest with Ireland’s large forward pack. Veterans Sam Whitelock and Brodie Retallick start in the second row.

Sam Cane will captain the All Blacks from the openside flank despite recent battles with injury and Ardie Savea has been named at No. 8.

The powerful Chiefs backrower Pita Gus Sowakula is likely to make his Test debut from the bench after a break season in Super Rugby.

Ofa Tuungafasi has been preferred over his Blues teammate Nepo Laulala at tighthead prop, though Laulala started throughout the season in that position.

Foster said when naming his team Thursday that it would be “doubly exciting” to play in front of a sellout crowd in Auckland.

“After what seems like a long time away from home it couldn’t be scripted better to be back in front of our fans for this match,” he said. “While this week hasn’t exactly gone to plan for us, our overall preparation has gone really well.

“We’ve prepared rigorously for this match, albeit only having a 10-day period together. We have huge respect for this Irish team and can’t wait to run out onto a packed Eden Park on Saturday.”

For Ireland, Robbie Henshaw and Garry Ringrose will form in an experienced midfield partnership while another New Zealand-born player, James Lowe, will start his 13th test on the left wing.

Prop Andrew Porter returns to the starting lineup after missing Ireland's last two matches in the Six Nations championship with injury. Hooker Dan Sheehan is the least experienced member of the starting 15 with seven caps.

Ireland beat New Zealand 29-20 when the teams last met in Dublin in November.

Squads

All Blacks: 15. Jordie Barrett, 14. Sevu Reece, 13. Rieko Ioane, 12. Quinn Tupaea, 11. Leicester Fainga’anuku, 10. Beauden Barrett, 9. Aaron Smith; 8. Ardie Savea, 7. Sam Cane (captain), 6. Scott Barrett, 5. Sam Whitelock, 4. Brodie Retallick, 3. Ofa Tuungafasi, 2. Codie Taylor, 1. George Bower.

Reserves: 16. Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17. Karl Tu’inukuafe, 18. Angus Ta’avao, 19. Pita Gus Sowakula, 20. Dalton Papalii, 21. Finlay Christie, 22. Richie Mo’unga, 23. Braydon Ennor.

Ireland: 15. Hugo Keenan, 14. Keith Earls, 13. Garry Ringrose, 12. Robbie Henshaw, 11. James Lowe, 10. Johnny Sexton (captain), 9. Jamison Gibson Park; 8. Caelan Doris, 7. Josh van der Flier, 6. Peter O'Mahoney, 5. James Ryan, 4. Tadhg Beirne, 3. Tadgh Furlong, 2. Dan Sheehan, 1. Andrew Porter.

Reserves: 16. Dave Heffernan, 17. Finlay Bealham, 18. Cian Healy, 19. Kieran Treadwell, 20. Jack Conan, 21. Conor Murray, 22. Joey Carbery, 23. Bundee Aki.