Ireland were completely unable to deal with the pace and pressure that New Zealand brought, according to former Ireland captain Keith Wood.
Joe Schmidt’s reign ended in massive disappointment today when Ireland were hammered by 32 points in a game they never looked like winning.
Wood was on Off The Ball after the game and gave his thoughts on where it all went wrong.
“I felt we looked jaded. We haven’t looked sharp in this World Cup. We seemed to be confident against Scotland but Scotland were absolutely abject.
“We just didn’t seem to be sharp at all. There were times where we did really good things and times we didn’t do good things. We looked shook for an awful lot of it.
“Your discipline goes when you’re under a lot of pressure. We looked shell-shocked for large parts of that game,” Wood said.
Ireland have been left behind
The men in green have been poor for large parts of 2019 and were shown up earlier in the World Cup when they lost to Japan.
Wood believes that the fast and frenetic style of rugby that both the Japanese and the All Blacks played against Ireland will be crucial to going far in the tournament.
“Especially during this World Cup, and you can see it. The teams that play at a million miles an hour and have real gas in their side are streets ahead.
“They’re taking some of the risks but their skills are standing up to scratch. I didn’t think we put New Zealand under a huge amount of pressure today.
“That is as good as I’ve seen New Zealand play since the last World Cup. They sustained almost a level of perfection throughout the game. That’s impossible.
“It’s a lonely place by the way. If you’re wearing a green jersey on that field and you’re not managing to hit that stride,” Wood commented.
Ireland will now look ahead to starting a new era under Andy Farrell, while New Zealand go on to play England in the semi-final in what is promising to be a titanic clash.
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