Ireland stun All Blacks to lay down Rugby World Cup marker

Beauden Barrett collides with Rob Kearney

Barrett did reduce the arrears from the tee but the All Blacks were tactically naive at times in the latter stages, running the ball when it wasn't on, and Ireland superbly held on to lay down a marker for the World Cup.

Ireland have beaten New Zealand on home soil for the first time ever, stunning the world's top-ranked side 16-9 at Aviva Stadium in Dublin.

Ireland have climbed to second in the world rankings under Joe Schmidt but the Kiwi-native still measures the progress of his side by their matches against his homeland.

One of the parts of the Ireland team that is still somewhat up in the air is who Joe Schmidt sees as the best understudy to Conor Murray at scrum-half: Connacht's Kieran Marmion or Leinster's Luke McGrath? What we do with the ball ourselves is important and so if we kick it we've got to kick it well, make sure we get a chance to get it back and do a wee bit of suffocating ourselves.

Schmidt himself referred to the closing stages of that 2013 loss on Thursday, although he has now narrowed his focus to the heart-stopping finish when Ireland lost possession with 29 seconds of normal time remaining.

"I'd like to think that we could be in the game but playing the All Blacks it's very hard to predict exactly how the game is going to go".

"I remember that one minute and 39 seconds that it took them from the tap penalty to the tryline when Ryan Crotty goes over", he said with a grimace. It was some conditioning, but mostly skill work and just trying to implement what it would be like at the end of a game.

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"You need to starve New Zealand of the ball and I would start Dev as well", said Henry. They controlled the play and pressurised the opposition line but, to the home side's credit, they produced an outstanding defensive set to negate that threat.

Ireland initially looked to build on their lead, but soon found themselves forced onto the back foot as the All Blacks looked to click into gear.

"What most people don't understand is that everybody we play has the game of their lives, because we're the team that they want to beat and they get up for for it".

Ireland's Jonathan Sexton after victory over New Zealand in the Autumn International match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin.

"I think there were really special moments for us in this Test match.It was a heck of a battle".

"But there will definitely be a feeling that you can get a one-up on someone you could find yourself meeting at some stage in the World Cup, because they're the best team in the world, and from Ireland's perspective that's either going to be at a quarterfinal stage or in the final".

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