Auckland, July 2 (UrduPoint/Pakistan Point News – July 2, 2022): New Zealand scored six tries in a convincing attacking display to beat Ireland 42-19 in the first Test of the three-game series at Eden Park Saturday.
The All Blacks were in control after opening a 28-5 half-time lead and Ireland’s problems were compounded by the fact that captain Johnny Sexton was sent off with a blow to the head that will put him off. in doubt for the second test in a week.
The home side’s finishing was the difference in a relatively even game, with their individual skills often the basis for breaks while Ireland had to work hard to create their three tries.
New Zealand striker Ardie Savea scored two tries, including a dynamic second-half score, while full-back Jordie Barrett converted all six tries and crossed the line himself on 17 points.
The result maintains Ireland’s record of never beating the All Blacks in New Zealand, a run they hoped to reverse after winning three of the previous five Tests between the nations.
It also extends New Zealand’s remarkable unbeaten streak at Eden Park, where they have won 45 of 47 Tests since 1994 with two draws.
Ireland’s hopes were dashed when they lost Sexton to a concussion in the first half.
The veteran fly-half has failed a head injury assessment and will likely miss the second test in Dunedin next Saturday according to World Rugby protocols, adding to a growing list of injuries.
New Zealand has also had to overcome construction disruptions, losing the services of seven coaching and playing staff to Covid-19.
But that hasn’t manifested in a strong response to heavy defeats to Ireland and France on their tour of the northern hemisphere in late 2021.
– Storming Savea – Ireland applied enormous pressure in the opening rallies, completing 18 rounds of play before veteran winger Keith Earls rushed in for his 35th Test try.
New Zealand scored no goals for the first 20 minutes but the floodgates opened soon after, first when Jordie Barrett crossed, set up by a charge from debuting Leicester winger Fainga’ anuku.
The momentum shifted on the half-hour mark when All Blacks winger Sevu Reece pounced on a loose pass from Garry Ringrose and ran 80 yards to score.
In the same stretch of play, Irish captain and playmaker Sexton was hit by an accidental forearm from his New Zealand counterpart Sam Cane and was unable to return to the pitch.
New Zealand created two tries in two minutes before the break through short kicks.
Quinn Tupaea took advantage of some great grubber from Beauden Barrett before a chip and chase from Aaron Smith resulted in Savea’s first try.
Ireland started the second half like their first, creating a try for Ringrose through multi-phase pressure, but Savea stormed for their second soon after, taking an outside break and leaving three defenders in its wake.
Ireland came close to scoring through Sexton’s substitute Joey Carbery and Josh van der Flier, but both knocked the ball down the try line, each time after a tackle from Reiko Ioane.
All Blacks substitute striker Pita Gus Sowakula swept through the base of the scrum on his debut before Ireland got the final laugh through Auckland-born substitute Bundee Aki.