2022 New Zealand All Blacks vs Ireland

International Third Test Preview: New Zealand Vs. Ireland

International Third Test Preview: New Zealand Vs. Ireland

After a historic result, Ireland looks to end strong in their final test match against New Zealand, this time set in Wellington.

Jul 13, 2022 by Briar Napier
International Third Test Preview: New Zealand Vs. Ireland

New Zealand took the first match, but Ireland took the second. The stakes are high for the all-important third test, as Ireland's tour comes to an end in Wellington. Can the Irish defeat the All Blacks in two consecutive matches? 

Here's everything you need to know about the July 16 match between Ireland and New Zealand. 

Where: Sky Stadium, Wellington, New Zealand

The lowdown: Alarm bells don’t ring often for New Zealand as the All Blacks one of the world’s most consistently elite rugby nations. But after a 23-12 defeat to Ireland this past weekend in Dunedin, the sirens are screeching. 

It was a historic night for coach Andy Farrell’s Ireland as it defeated the All Blacks in New Zealand for the first time ever, but a humiliating night for coach Ian Foster’s side as the country slipped to an all-time low of fourth in the most recent Men’s World Rugby Rankings. 

A double of tries from prop Andrew Porter and accurate kicking (5 for 5 on conversions and penalties) from captain Jonathan Sexton propelled Ireland to the massive result. All while Foster’s job security sank to a new low after his employment was already in danger from the All Blacks’ poor finish to 2021 (by their standards). 

The third and final test of Ireland’s tour—which the All Blacks likely hoped would be an opportunity for some squad rotation—now becomes a must-win for New Zealand as it hasn’t lost two of three matches from a single series since 2009 against South Africa. 

Wellington has been far from friendly recently for the All Blacks—the home side hasn’t won there since it defeated France in June 2018, drawing two matches (to Australia and South Africa) and losing one (to South Africa) since then. 

Meanwhile, Ireland can catch New Zealand on its heels and possibly turn a monumental tour into an unforgettable one. Another win against the All Blacks would give it a serious shout to be the world’s No. 1-ranked team at this time next week.