IRELAND can expect a ‘Blacklash’ on their daunting three Test tour of New Zealand this July according to All Black’s coach Ian Foster.
nticipation is growing for the series, with New Zealand Rugby announcing the first encounter at Auckland’s Eden Park has sold out.
Andy Farrell will name his squad for the tour in the coming weeks as he seeks to build on a strong year that saw Ireland claim the Triple Crown and defeat New Zealand in Dublin in November.
That famous victory was Ireland’s third in five meetings with the All Blacks, with three of those games coming on home soil and the other two on neutral ground.
The Eden Park date is Ireland’s first game on New Zealand soil since the Hamilton horror show, a 60-0 humbling that completed a 3-0 sweep.
Having lost to Ireland and France in the last two games of 2021, Foster wants a response.
“The Irish series is going to be vital. We’re still hurting from the last two (Tests) last year,” he said.
“Those last two hurt, and so we’ve got to take those lessons. We can go straight into it.
“We know we’ve got an Irish team that is largely based around Leinster. They’ve got a lot of cohesion in that team, and they’ll be coming really prepared.
“So, I think when you look at our Series now, we’ve got a series with some real meat in it.”
Ireland are in for a gruelling month, with two games against the Maori All Blacks on a schedule that will test them to the limit.