Hansen hails All Blacks' composure
June 16, 2012
Dan Carter kicked the winning points in Christchurch © Getty Images
New Zealand coach Steve Hansen praised his side's composure after a smash and grab victory over Ireland in Christchurch on Saturday.
Dan Carter landed a drop-goal at the death to secure a 22-19 victory and the series for the All Blacks, who were far from their best.
Ireland, on the other hand, were a different side to the one humbled in Auckland last weekend, a fact acknowledged by Hansen.
"We probably shouldn't have won tonight but the composure we showed allowed us to do that. That is the sign of a good team," he said. "The big thing tonight is that we have beaten an Irish side that has, probably, played as good as they could have. We didn't play great."
Ireland coach Declan Kidney refused to play the blame game following the final whistle, with referee Nigel Owens' handling of the game late on angering a number of observers.
"We are just trying to work on what is under our control," he said. "We will have a look at it this week, but will only be focusing on what we can control."
Kidney is facing a selection headache at scrum-half, with Conor Murray scoring Ireland's try and Eoin Reddan adding impetus off the bench.
"He had the confidence to play a bit more tonight. He showed that with the opportunity that he took," he said of Murray. "[His selection] was a tight call and Eoin Reddan did well. We'll just have to see how guys pull up during the week."
Ireland will wait for further news on centre Gordon D'Arcy, who left the field after 51 minutes with a tight calf.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Huw Richards assesses where Wales are after a mixed Six Nations, with front row seats still very much available for the World Cup
John Mitchell lapped up the action on 'Sensational Saturday' - but warns not to expect a repeat come Rugby World Cup time later this year
Craig Dowd warns England, Ireland and Wales they should play to their strengths rather than those of the All Blacks and the Wallabies
Tom Hamilton runs the rule over just where the six countries stand ahead of the global gathering in September