Ireland prepare to take 'last shot' at ABs
Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll yesterday said the third test against the All Blacks was the "last shot" at a win in New Zealand for years.
Ireland rugby squad changes were announced in Queenstown before tomorrow's game in Hamilton.
Paddy Wallace, who replaced an injured Gordon D'Arcy, was named as inside centre and Keith Earls returned to the squad as left wing, replacing Andrew Trimble.
Trimble is in the reserves.
Jamie Heaslip was ruled out after breaking a finger and he is replaced by Peter O'Mahony at No 8.
Chris Henry moves to the bench to fill the spot left by O'Mahony's promotion to the starting 15.
O'Driscoll said Wallace always added something as a player and around the squad.
Asked about an All Blacks team minus Dan Carter, who injured a hamstring, he said replacement Aaron Cruden was "handy enough" and the 23-year-old's Super 15 performances were pretty impressive.
With the All Blacks experimenting with player position too, he said Ireland had its best players and there was no more focus on the New Zealand scrum pack than any other test.
"They have to look at life without Dan Carter, it gives Ireland a great opportunity.
"We have one last shot this weekend for the last time in 12 years – that's a huge opportunity for us.
"It's a long, long time to consider playing down these parts again."
Coach Declan Kidney said Wallace was a great player for Ireland and had given more than 10 years' service.
The Ireland team spent five days relaxing and training in Queenstown after the 22-19 second test loss to the All Blacks in Christchurch.
IRELAND SQUAD: Rob Kearney, Fergus McFadden, Brian O'Driscoll (capt), Paddy Wallace, Keith Earls, Jonathan Sexton, Conor Murray, Peter O'Mahony, Sean O'Brien, Kevin McLaughlin, Donnacha Ryan, Dan Tuohy, Mike Ross, Rory Best, Cian Healy. Reserves: Sean Cronin, Declan Fitzpatrick, Donncha O'Callaghan, Chris Henry, Eoin Reddan, Ronan O'Gara, Andrew Trimble.
- © Fairfax NZ News