How the New Zealand media reacted to Ireland's win over the All Blacks

How the New Zealand media reacted to Ireland's win over the All Blacks

"Ireland can now claim to be the best team in the world after producing a stunning performance that was brave, creative and relentless."

That was how the New Zealand Herald's Gregor Paul opened his match report from Ireland's historic 16-9 win over the All Blacks on Saturday.

Paul says Ireland were "unbreakable" and "resolute" adding that it would be a long time "before we witness a performance that brave."

"They had an answer to everything the All Blacks threw at them and they never panicked, never looked overawed by the occasion."

The same paper's Liam Napier referred to Ireland as the best team in the world, saying "this was the best against the best. And Ireland prevailed. Forget the rankings, that's all there is to it."

Both writers singled out Ireland's defence for praise with Napier highlighting Ireland's defence coach Andy Farrell.

"Once again, Andy Farrell's defensive system held the All Blacks tryless," wrote Napier.

"Everywhere you looked there was another desperate man in green."

Paul, meanwhile, stated that "Ireland's relentless defence had unnerved them [New Zealand]."

On, Richard Knowler claims Ireland "are the unofficial kings of world rugby" in his match report.

He says Ireland "hustled the All Blacks into uncharacteristic mistakes" and went on to say " Ireland were like ruthless cyborgs as they clinically followed the formula that had proved such a success for them in the Six Nations."

Knowler also praised Ireland's ball carrying, writing:

At times it was as if the All Blacks were going to be smothered by a green carpet of ball runners.

The Irishmen came in waves and at times the All Blacks were barely hanging on.'s, Robert van Royen, says despite defeat the All Blacks have no need to panic.

"Hansen knows when to give credit, and losing to a serious World Cup contender will never cause him to panic," writes van Royen.

He states that "Hansen is still figuring out what the best make-up of his side is" adding: "Good thing Hansen has time.

"Sunday's loss to Ireland will mean diddly-poo come next year's tournament [the World Cup]. Many won't even recall the exact score."

How the New Zealand media reacted to Ireland's win over the All Blacks

Aaron Goile, also writing for, offers some interesting if not startling facts about Ireland's victory.

Goile states it has been 20 years since the All Blacks were held tryless and held to single figures.

"Out of New Zealand's 579 test matches ever played, it was just the 47th time (8.12%) the men in black had failed to cross the chalk," Goile writes.

He adds that the All Blacks have been kept in single figures just 82 out of 579 (14.16%) but qualified it by adding "points values have changed through the years and have a bearing on those numbers."

The last time New Zealand were held to single figures they were winners - in the 8-7 World Cup final against France in 2011.

The fact that Ireland managed to keep the All-Blacks try-less and under ten points is a testiment to Farrell's work on Ireland's defence. New Zealand head coach Steve Hansen admits he is surprised England ever let Farrell leave. Hansen also labelled Ireland favourites for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

Over in the Otago Daily Times, Patrick McKendry writes that Ireland are "a team who look the complete package."

McKendry is another to add praise to the Ireland defence, saying "their defence was incredible. They will be a huge World Cup threat."

He was also full of praise for man of the match Peter O'Mahony, calling him: "One of the best 'tight' loose forwards in the world."

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