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Joe Schmidt reflects on 'Savea mix-up' during victory over New Zealand

Off The Ball
Off The Ball

08:32 14 Sep 2018


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Joe Schmidt joined Friday's Off the Ball at our Go Racing special at the Leopardstown Inn.

Ireland finally broke their duck against New Zealand in Chicago on a historic weekend in the Windy City after Schmidt's side beat the World Champions 40-29.

Despite the close scoreline - the game wasn't secured until the dying moments after Robbie Henshaw crashed over from close range off an attacking scrum. 

It wasn't all plain sailing as Schmidt revealed, with a mix-up leading the Irish to attack the wrong wing: "We get a scrum in a deep position and we attack wide and part of that was because they had some injuries. 

"It's almost funny now but I sent a message out 'Attack Savea on the wing' so they attacked the short side where Julian Savea was - not where Ardie Savea the flanker was! So I couldn't believe it! I said 'The other Savea!'

"I just wish people wouldn't put brothers out there. And then of course, we attack down that wing and they swapped Ardie Savea into the midfield or into number 10 and put Ben Smith, one of the best players in the world, out on the wing and I go 'Well, maybe not now' but it's too late, the message is there and they skin him and Zeebs does a great kick over the top. 

"Conor Murray, in that tackle, was phenomenal. We had a little set play from that - we'd been trying to get a field position where we were going to have a crack with that for two years. We'd dreamed it up against South Africa a couple of years ago to have a crack at but the opportunity arose - it just worked like it did on the day," he added.   

 

 

 

 

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