Irish rugby basking in glory of historic win over All-Blacks

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent, at the Aviva Stadium

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Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent, at the Aviva Stadium

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ckinsella@limerickleader.ie

Irish rugby basking in glory of historic win over All-Blacks

Ireland winger Keith Earls celebrates with his daughter Ella May at full-time in Saturday night's historic win over New Zealand at the Aviva Stadium

IRISH rugby is basking in the glory of scoring an historic first home win over New Zealand after 113 years of trying.

Joe Schmidt’s side produced a stirring display against the world champions to earn a first win over the All-Blacks on home soil at ther 17th attempt.

Jacob Stockdale's superb chip-and-gather try in the third quarter decided an absorbing contest between the top two sides in the world.

Johnny Sexton also kicked 11 points for the home side.

Grand Slam champions Ireland added to their historic first win over the All Blacks in 2016 as Joe Schmidt’s side sent out a warning before the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.

Ireland became the first northern Hemisphere team, other than the 2017 British & Irish Lions, to keep New Zealand try-less in a Test match since France back in November 1995.

Saturday night’s 16-9 victory was Ireland’s eleventh straight win on home soil.

Joe Schmidt's charges kept the All Blacks to their lowest points tally in 96 Tests since the 2011 Rugby World Cup final against France (8-7), while it was their lowest score against Ireland in Dublin since winning 6-5 back in December 1963.

Afterwards Man of the Match Peter O’Mahony admitted beating New Zealand at home for the first time was a ‘big piece of history’ for the squad.

Munster captain O’Mahony said: “We are building nicely, some nice confidence going into the next 6 Nations to build on. We obviously have a big game next week against the USA, so we'll recover and get stuck in next week. 

“It is a big piece of history for us and it is one we wanted to tick off in Ireland and we have ticked it off now, so happy days.

“Look, it has taken a while, one hundred and whatever years. It's a special group of boys. It is an honour to play alongside them every time you take to the field, every time you get the chance .

“It is a special day today playing alongside some of my best friends, a good day.

“We knew we had to be relentless. They are not number one in the world for the craic, they're the best team in the world and we knew we probably had to play the best game of this squad's tenure and it was well up there with one of the best.

“It was unreal playing alongside them, boys showing up everywhere, tackles they probably shouldn't have made, guys were fighting for each other, fighting for the cause and it was a good day.”