Ireland women have been beaten 9-2 in their Four Nations clash at UCD.

As the game started the Irish defence were called in to action making strong tackles inside the 25 as the Blacksticks came out of the blocks sprinting.

They scored their first of six first-half goals in the eighth minute  – a PC turned in by Webster.

Katie Glynn chipped the crossbar on the 12 minutes, while Anita Punt converted from their second PC with a high drag flick.

Ireland earned their first PC on 17 minutes but failed to convert. The NZ third came from open play through Gemma Flynn with a fine finish. 

Sophie Cocks converted their third PC with a neat deflection. Punt was on the scoresheet again in the 26th minute from open play.

The pace of the Blacksticks attack was proving too strong for the Irish defence as they scored their sixth goal from their fourth PC from the stick of Krystal Forgesson. 

Megan Frazer converted  PC No 2  for Ireland with a straight strike on 32 minutes to leave the half-time score 6-1.

Ireland were first to score in the second half with a Cliodhna Sargent PC strike, on her 149th cap, finding the backboard in the 40th minute. 

NZ struck again in the 43m when Olivia Merry scored from a PC and 12m later she got her second from open play. 

The final goal of the tie came a minute later when Gemma Flynn finished in the 56th minute.

Ireland had a great chance in the 68th minute as Nicola Evans found Watkins in the circle but her touch was just wide. 

The Green Army worked hard, but were outclassed by the world's number four team New Zealand, who were clinical with their finishing.

Irish coach Smith said after the game: ‘Credit to NZ they are a top-quality opposition who scored some really nice goals and had some excellent passages of play.

"As a group we are disappointed as we gave NZ too much space and thought, as a defence, we have had better performances in the past.

"Canada will be a tough opponent tomorrow, but we look forward to the challenge.”