New Zealand v Ireland: Teams

At Rugby League Park, Saturday June 16, kick-off 8.35am, live on Sky Sports 2HD

Last updated: 15th June 2012   Subscribe to RSS Feed

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Steve Hansen: Delighted Test rugby has returned to Christchurch

Brian O Driscoll NZ Training

Brian O'Driscoll: Looking for Ireland to give their fans something to cheer about

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Ireland will be aiming to bounce back from their first Test mauling when they take on New Zealand in Christchurch on Saturday.

The tourists slipped to a 42-10 defeat at Eden Park last Saturday and skipper Brian O'Driscoll is expecting a response as his side seek to square the three-match series.

He insists Ireland are going for the win as they seek to make amends and give the fans something to cheer about.

"Every time you pull on a Test jersey, irrespective of the occasion, it is special, this is no different. We are not playing here for second best," said O'Driscoll.

"I get the feeling that there are quite a few Paddys in Christchurch. We were told at training that every Irish person in the area was trying to get a ticket for the game. We'd like to give them something to cheer about too."

The inclusion of Kevin McLaughlin, Mike Ross and Gordon D'Arcy means Heineken Cup champions Leinster will make up two-thirds of the Irish XV.

McLaughlin will team up with province team-mate Sean O'Brien and Jamie Heaslip in the back-row, while D'Arcy resumes his partnership with O'Driscoll in the midfield. Ross joins fellow prop Cian Healy in passing a fitness test to take his place in the front-row.

There is also a call-up for Ulster winger Andrew Trimble, with Simon Zebo dropping to the bench.

One change

For New Zealand, coach Steve Hansen has been forced to make one change, with Adam Thomson starting in place of flanker Victor Vito, who has been ruled out with a knee injury.

Uncapped loose forward Sam Cane has also been added to the bench for the encounter, the first international in Christchurch since 2010 following a devastating earthquake in February last year.

"It's great that Test footy has returned to Christchurch and the players are looking forward to playing in front of a sell-out crowd," Hansen said.

"The team, especially those of us from Christchurch, know that people have still been doing it tough so hopefully we can give them a performance on Saturday that puts a smile on their faces."

New Zealand: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Zac Guildford, 13 Conrad Smith, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Dan Carter, 9 Aaron Smith, 1 Tony Woodcock, 2 Andrew Hore, 3 Owen Franks, 4 Brodie Retallick, 5 Sam Whitelock, 6 Adam Thomson, 7 Richie McCaw (captain), 8 Kieran Read
Replacements: 16 Hika Elliot, 17 Ben Franks, 18 Ali Williams, 19 Sam Cane, 20 Piri Weepu, 21 Aaron Cruden, 22 Ben Smith

Ireland: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Fergus McFadden, 13 Brian O'Driscoll (captain), 12 Gordon D'Arcy, 11 Andrew Trimble, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Conor Murray, 1 Cian Healy, 2 Rory Best, 3 Mike Ross, 4 Dan Tuohy, 5 Donnacha Ryan, 6 Kevin McLaughlin, 7 Sean O'Brien, 8 Jamie Heaslip
Replacements:16 Sean Cronin, 17 Declan Fitzpatrick, 18 Donncha O'Callaghan, 19 Peter O'Mahony, 20 Eoin Reddan, 21 Ronan O'Gara, 22 Simon Zebo

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