Richie McCaw: All Blacks would change head coach policy for Joe Schmidt


"It is one and two, so whoever wins will be the best side in the world regardless of rankings", said Hansen. You don't get any bigger.

"I always remember the 2013 game and it was one of the toughest matches I had just in terms of the physicality and the breakdown work that went on".

The return of Murray would be a timely boost for Schmidt and Ireland who know they will need to be at their very best if they are to emulate the heroics of Soldier Field in 2016. It's no wonder that they looked the more cohesive outfit.

The pressure never eases for them while maybe Ireland don't have that same consistency of expectation and so not the same experience of dealing with pressure.

"I haven't got tickets, so I can't give you tickets".

Hansen said that depriving Murray of ball by dominating in the scrum is imperative otherwise he will be free to pull the strings and run riot. "Everyone seems to find another 10 percent when they play us because it is a good story if you can beat the All Blacks and everyone gets excited by that".

"They will say they were 15-0 down (against England) and didn't start well but came back and they will see we also didn't begin well but also fought back".

And perhaps the knowledge Hansen is building the game is in acknowledgement of the giant strides the Irish have made.

The Tullow native's last Ireland appearance came against the same opposition at the end of the November window a year ago.

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With the autumn series gearing up towards a mouthwatering tie against New Zealand a week from Saturday there is a fear that complacency could creep into the Irish camp just like it seemingly did in 2015.

O'Brien and Ireland after their team photo yesterday.

"They should have beaten us in Christchurch".

"Tactically they're smart, they're good in the air".

"Then as a result next week they're really looking forward to the game but watching it from the stands, that's not where they want to be".

"Have we been scarred [by losing to Ireland]?"

While the 33-year-old could still be available for the final game of the tour against Italy on October 24th, Hansen said Ngani Laumape will join the team in case anyone else got injured.

Rob Kearney is expected to miss out with a shoulder injury, but Johnny Sexton, Rory Best, Tadhg Furlong and Iain Henderson are among the players set to be pressed into action for the first time this month.

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