Michael Aylwin at the Aviva Stadium

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Nov 20

Ireland nurse wounds after New Zealand prevail in bruising encounter

• Ireland 9-21 New Zealand
• World Rugby have questions to answer following catalogue of injuries

Those eagerly awaiting this match, which was anyone in the world with a passing interest in rugby, were not to be disappointed but the repercussions of a ferocious contest are likely to be felt for some time. Most immediately, there is the injury count. Ireland came off worse, with Johnny Sexton and Robbie Henshaw almost certainly out of the match against Australia on Saturday. CJ Stander and Rob Kearney are further doubts, while New Zealand will most likely be without Sam Cane and Ben Smith for the final date of their tour, against the French in Paris.

Cane’s ankle was twisted in a ruck; Sexton’s hamstring (not the one he has had so much trouble with) gave out; Henshaw and Stander went off, the former on a stretcher, for head injury assessments and never returned. That was all by the 25-minute mark. Smith was later withdrawn with a broken finger that punctured the skin, and Kearney was another to have his head assessed.

Related: Malakai Fekitoa ensures All Blacks get their revenge against Ireland

Related: Ireland 9-21 New Zealand: rugby union autumn internationals – as it happened

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Permanent link to this article: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2016/nov/20/ireland-new-zealand-match-report-autumn-internationals-rugby-union