Joe Schmidt’s final game as Irish head coach ended in disappointment as his side suffered a disappointing 46-14 defeat to New Zealand in their Rugby World Cup quarter-final.
Ireland were outclassed by an incredibly strong All Blacks side as they racked up seven tries in the victory to hand Schmidt‘s charges their seventh World Cup quarter-final defeat.
As good as New Zealand were however, Ireland did not help themselves throughout the game in Tokyo committing a host of individual errors and allowing the All Blacks to control proceedings.
It was not the ending to his six years in charge that Schmidt would have been hoping for and speaking after the game the Irish head coach highlighted the mistakes his side made against New Zealand.
“It wasn’t just 22 points, it was all the ball we gave them,” said Schmidt.
“I think we missed touch for us to get field position three times. It just meant that we were chasing our tail, they had so much ball in our 22′ and our half. It was very tough going.
“We had a few chances in that first half. the third try that the All Blacks scored, we had a gap on the outside we just didn’t quite play it. We didn’t quite have a feel, we’ve been a little bit flat all season, which is disappointing.
“We were great last year and we just came off the top of that and haven’t quite been where we wanted to be all year.”
Schmidt’s final game in charge also coincided with Irish captain Rory Best’s and although it was a disappointing day, the New Zealander took the time to thank Best, his players and the supporters.
“I’d like to thank my players and I’d like to thank these supporters. Rory (Best) has led the team incredibly well and Paul O’Connell before him. It’s been a privilege for me.”
🗣 "We've been a little bit flat all season which is disappointing. Thank you to my players and these supporters. It has been a privilege for me." @IrishRugby's Joe Schmidt talks about his team's defeat in his final game in charge #RWC2019 #NZLvIRE #RWCTokyo pic.twitter.com/KJIx9WfF2o
— Rugby World Cup (@rugbyworldcup) October 19, 2019