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14th Oct 2023

Ireland vs. New Zealand: All the biggest moments, talking points and player ratings

Patrick McCarry

Ireland player ratings

Destiny awaits – an historic semi-final or a ticket back to Dublin Airport.

Andy Farrell named a strong Ireland team to face New Zealand, on Wednesday, ahead of a huge World Cup quarter final. We will have all the biggest moments, talking points and full Ireland player ratings in our live feed [below].

Having set an Irish record for a World Cup winning margin, against Romania, then defeated Tonga 59-16, Farrell’s men pipped South Africa 13-8 in a tense classic. Ireland needed just two points to top Pool B, but finished with all five points to top it, and set up this quarter final with New Zealand.

Click on the key point you want to read about, or just keep scrolling to see updates in our live hub [below]

Ireland player ratingsIreland players, from left, Caelan Doris, Josh van der Flier, Dan Sheehan pictured during the national anthems before a 2022 clash with New Zealand. (Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile)

Mike Catt on New Zealand, and previous Ireland player ratings

Ahead of Saturday’s showdown in Paris, Ireland attack coach Mike Catt spoke with the media about what to expect from the All Blacks.

“What we’ve seen is the good All Blacks of old, really,” he said. “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.”

Looking back at our Ireland player ratings for the warm-up games and that RWC opener, it gives us an idea of who is in form and who could do with a big performance.

Jacob Stockdale, who did not make the final squad, and Caelan Doris were the top performers in the warm-up win over Italy. Against England, Hugo Keenan, Mack Hansen, Tadhg Beirne and Josh van der Flier were the top dogs. Hansen did well against Samoa, along with Ryan Baird and Conor Murray.

In the Romania game, Keenan, Bundee Aki, Johnny Sexton and Joe McCarthy all scored 8/10s. Against Tonga, Johnny Sexton and Mack Hansen both scored 9/10 while James Ryan, Andrew Porter and Bundee Aki all got 8s.

In that epic, tense win over South Africa, Caelan Doris, Andrew Porter and James Lowe all scored 8/10, while Bundee Aki got 8.5 after another great effort. Doris and Garry Ringrose topped our Scotland ratings, with 9/10 each.


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