/ Rugby

Kearney rues Ireland failure to deal with Kiwi offloads

Updated: Sunday, 24 Jun 2012 15:16 | Comments

Rob Kearney can't prevent Liam Messam touching down
Rob Kearney can't prevent Liam Messam touching down

Audio

Ireland full-back Rob Kearney admits his side's failure to stop New Zealand's offloads in the tackle left them doomed to defeat.

Declan Kidney's side were humiliated 60-0 in the final match of their Antipodean series, with Sonny Bill Williams and Sam Cane scoring two apiece of the All Blacks' nine tries.

Williams had been kept relatively quiet in the opening two games of the series but, with Chiefs team-mate Aaron Cruden serving up delightful flick passes and offloads, the 6ft 4in centre was a wrecking ball to Irish hopes of a close contest.

Kearney, though, felt the hosts' guile and handling skills were the key factor.

"They all offload in the tackle and that is the strength of their game," said Kearney. "I think that was our biggest weakness, as a team, that we didn't stop their offloads.

"We know that against New Zealand you have to stop the offloads. We didn't do it tonight and they got a lot of tries from it."

The Irish backline were also overpowered by that of the All Blacks, though, with the point emphatically emphasised on 49 minutes when winger Hosea Gear outpaced Fergus McFadden down the left and paused to pole-axe Keith Earls before dragging the trailing McFadden over the tryline.

When asked what the main differences was between the two sides, Kearney responded, "It is the speed they play at, the intensity that they play at and sheer size as well.

"They are bigger than us. That is something we need to address as well. Are we built differently? I don't know."

User contributions and/or comments do not, unless specifically stated, represent the views of RTÉ.ie or RTÉ.
Click here for Terms of use