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Ireland vs New Zealand: 5 Classic encounters ahead of heavyweight clash

By PA
Illinois , United States - 5 November 2016; Ireland captain Rory Best leads his side onto the pitch ahead of the International rugby match between Ireland and New Zealand at Soldier Field in Chicago, USA. (Photo By Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Ireland will take on three-time champions New Zealand on Saturday evening in a crunch Rugby World Cup quarter-final in Paris.

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The Irish had to wait 111 years for a first Test victory over the All Blacks but have had the upper hand recently by winning four of the last six meetings.

Here, the PA news agency picks out some memorable recent matches between the two nations.

New Zealand 60 Ireland 0 (Hamilton, 2012)

An unforgettable match for all the wrong reasons from an Irish perspective.

A maiden win over the All Blacks seemed a million miles away just over a decade ago following the country’s record defeat on a humiliating evening.

Ruthless New Zealand wrapped up a 3-0 series success with a nine-try demolition of an Ireland team containing current squad members Johnny Sexton, Conor Murray, Keith Earls and Peter O’Mahony.

Present-day Kiwi captain Sam Cane claimed two of the reigning world champions’ scores as Declan Kidney’s men were sent home embarrassed.

Ireland 22 New Zealand 24 (Dublin, 2013)

Aaron Cruden completed a remarkable comeback for record-breaking New Zealand by slotting a retaken conversion with the final act of a heartbreaking afternoon for the hosts.

Ireland were moments away from a milestone win after Rob Kearney’s 80-metre dash helped them lead 19-0 inside 18 minutes.

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But, with the clock in the 82nd minute, Ryan Crotty’s try levelled matters.

Cruden then silenced a stunned Aviva Stadium by slotting the extras at the second attempt as the All Blacks became the first Test side in the professional era to achieve a 100 per cent record in a calendar year.

Ireland 40 New Zealand 29 (Chicago, 2016)

Ireland’s class of 2016 produced fireworks at Soldier Field on Bonfire Night to stamp their names into the history books with a landmark first triumph over the All Blacks at the 29th attempt.

Tries from Jordi Murphy, CJ Stander and Conor Murray gave Joe Schmidt’s side a commanding half-time advantage.

Simon Zebo’s score stretched the lead to 30-8 before Robbie Henshaw completed the job after the All Blacks, seeking a 19th straight win, threatened another stunning fightback by closing the gap to just four points.

Ireland 16 New Zealand 9 (Dublin, 2018)

Ireland laid down a marker ahead of the 2019 World Cup by beating the All Blacks on home soil for the first time.

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Jacob Stockdale’s superb chip-and-gather try decided an absorbing contest between Test rugby’s top two sides.

Fly-half Sexton advanced his claims for the world player of the year award, which he went on to win, with the rest of his nation’s points, while Beauden Barrett’s boot kept the Kiwis in contention.

Steve Hansen’s side may have come off second best but they gained revenge 11 months later on the biggest stage in Tokyo with a thumping 46-14 quarter-final win.

New Zealand 22 Ireland 32 (Wellington, 2022)

A week on from a maiden victory over the All Blacks on New Zealand soil – 23-12 in Dunedin – Ireland made more history by wrapping up a stunning series success to climb to the top of the world rankings.

Andy Farrell’s men raced into a 19-point half-time lead in an epic encounter courtesy of tries from Josh van der Flier, Hugo Keenan and Henshaw.

The All Blacks closed to within three points in a frenetic second period before Rob Herring extinguished a Kiwi fightback to seal arguably Ireland’s finest result.

Head-to-Head

Last 5 Meetings

Wins
2
Draws
0
Wins
3
Average Points scored
22
30
First try wins
40%
Home team wins
40%
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