This is from the Sunday Star Times, the biggest NZ broadsheet newspaper. Also carried in stuff.co.nz. on this link.
It speaks about a possible NZ-Ireland meeting in the RWC semis. I
think it's interesting because it appears that we are awakening their
interest, just a bit.....
<h2>Ireland timing their World Cup run just right</font></h2>
TUESDAY , 21 NOVEMBER 2006</font>
By MICHAEL DONALDSON in Cardiff</font>
weekend for the Irish. First their rugby team beats Australia by a record margin
and then their top golfer Padraig Harrington beats Tiger Woods in a playoff
courtesy of a miracle shot to win a big tournament in Japan.
[img]/inl/images/flags/cam1.gif[/img] IRE v AUS - 1ST HALF HIGHLIGHTS</font> [img]/inl/images/flags/cam1.gif[/img] 2ND HALF HIGHLIGHTS</font>
[img]/inl/images/flags/cam1.gif[/img] IRE v SA - 1ST HALF HIGHLIGHTS</font> [img]/inl/images/flags/cam1.gif[/img] 2ND HALF HIGHLIGHTS</font> </font>
Harrington, a player who has yet to win a major, might have got the rub of
the green to beat Woods but it took more than luck to get into the showdown with
the world No 1. Similarly the rise and rise of Eddie O'Sullivan's green-shirted
men, who have yet to win rugby's major tournament, is the product of skill and
years of development.
Their showdown with the world No 1 is less than a year away with Ireland
drawn to face the All Blacks in the knock-out stages.
Based on the past two weeks, the All Blacks will be have to be on top of
their game at the World Cup to avoid losing to Ireland for the first time.
Ireland thoroughly stuffed South Africa two weeks ago and then, even with
changes such as New Zealand-born Issac Boss starting at halfback, they dealt to
Australia 21-6 in appalling conditions. They are wins New Zealand would be happy
to take on any given day.
Even three years ago this didn't seem possible, not because Ireland didn't
have the skills, but because they didn't have the confidence and the self-belief
- Brian O'Driscoll aside - to be world beaters.
The World Cup has dealt Ireland some doses of bad luck, most notably against
Australia when they let in a late try to lose a quarterfinal in 1991 and then
the narrow loss in pool play to the home side in 2003. A series of drop goals
that would have won the match narrowly missed and the result sent O'Sullivan's
men to a losing quarterfinal date w