Patrick McKendry is a rugby writer for the Herald.

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen: The right team won

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen has copped today's streak-ending defeat against Ireland on the chin.

Speaking immediately after Ireland's historic 40-29 victory at Chicago's Soldier Field, Hansen made no excuses for his side's loss which ended their 18-test match winning world record run.

"The right side won," Hansen told sideline broadcast interviewers. "The Irish played very well and congratulations to them. When you see their fans going like they are now, it's about time they won one anyway.

READ MORE:
Magnificent men in green: Ireland make history
The All Blacks have fallen
Irish pack key to historic victory
Social media goes mad as Ireland win

Hansen agreed that the All Blacks being without their top three locks in Sam Whitelock, Brodie Retallick and Luke Romano had impacted on the team's performance.

"But we don't want to use that as an excuse," he quickly added. "We trained well enough, we prepared well enough, we thought, but clearly we didn't get a few things right. They put us under pressure and deserved to win. We're not going to make any excuses about not having the right people."

Hansen claimed he wasn't surprised by Ireland's quick start, nor their tenacity in hanging on to deny the fast-finishing All Blacks.

"They couldn't surprise us - the last time we played them we beat them in the 82nd minute - we'd be very foolish not to think they aren't a very good side," he said. "When you get a good side against another good side you're going to get results like we did tonight.

"In the first half they had all the momentum didn't they. We talked before the game of not giving away avoidable penalties, but because of the pressure we did. They built momentum and then we were chasing them."

Hansen agreed the All Blacks now had much to do on the remainder of their northern tour.

"Ireland certainly put a full stop in it today," said the coach of the end of New Zealand's streak. "We've got to pick ourselves off the floor. It's easy when you're winning. Now we've got a wee operation to do to get up after a loss. While you don't like it, you've got to give all the credit to Ireland and we've got to go away and look at ourselves."

Hansen also has immediate headaches for selections for the upcoming tests against Italy in Rome, return clash against Ireland in Dublin and the game against France in Paris.

He confirmed Ryan Crotty has suffered a serious hamstring injury and centre George Moala had hurt his shoulder. Both are likely to heading home to New Zealand.

"We've got plenty [of injuries]; we've lost both midfielders for the tour, by the look of it, but we'll have a look when we get back in the shed," he said

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW
Stats provided by

© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf03 at 09 Dec 2016 00:35:06 Processing Time: 464ms