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13th Oct 2023

Mike Catt offers three unlikely names if Ireland quarter final goes to penalties decider

Lee Costello

“We have spoken about it.”

Ireland will face New Zealand in the quarter finals of the World Cup, and with the possibility of the game needing to be decided on penalties, Mike Catt offers three unlikely names.

There is every chance that the game could go to extra time, or indeed require penalties, so it’s important that Ireland are prepared for such an event.

Speaking at the Ireland’s captain’s run at Stade de France, assistant Catt offers three unlikely names if the quarter final tie does go to penalties decider.

“We have spoken about it. The players know who they are. Andrew Porter, Dan Sheehan, Tadhg Beirne (laughs). 

“They’ve definitely put in an extra couple of hours. No, it’s one of those. Players are aware of it but it’s a long way to get to that situation. 

“You’d like to think with the golden point now, compared to what it was in the past, that with extra-time then golden point that, in that 10 minutes, one side would take their opportunity.

“The players who are on the pitch will know who they are and fingers crossed we put them through the middle.”

Ireland coach on what to expect from the All-Blacks.

Catt was also asked what Ireland could expect from this All-Blacks team, because although they might not have the same aura that they used to posses, they are still a powerhouse in the world of rugby.

“What we’ve seen is the good All Blacks of old, really. Exceptionally dangerous ball-in-hand. 

“Joe [Schmidt] has definitely brought a physicality at the breakdown and their ball carrying. 


“Obviously, it was something that Joe was massively passionate about with Ireland as well, especially in the wide breakdowns.

“They put a lot of pressure in those areas, so it’s making sure that we match them physically but being tactically good in the same breath. 

“Across the board they have a hell of a lot of experience, even coming off the bench – you know, Sam Whitelock – these guys that have hundreds of caps really.

“They are very experienced and know exactly what they need to do to win these big occasions. It’s going to be a great test match and we’re looking forward to it.”

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