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All Blacks too strong for Ireland

Ireland's wait for a maiden victory against New Zealand continues after they suffered their heaviest defeat against the All Blacks, going down 66-28.

Outscored by nine tries to four in New Plymouth, it was a bad night for the Irish who have failed to beat the New Zealanders in 23 Test matches.

Reduced to 14 men when number eight Jamie Heaslip was sent off with just over 15 minutes gone, the visitors never stood a chance against a fired-up All Blacks outfit and matters just got worse when Ronan O'Gara was sin-binned for cynical play midway through the first period.

By half-time the hosts were 38-7 up after tries by Conrad Smith, Kieran Read, Ben Franks and two for Jimmy Cowan.

Dan Tuohy, who had come on for the injured Mick O'Driscoll, brought a moment of cheer for the Irish with a try just before the break but the good moments were few and far between.

The tries kept coming for both sides in the second spell with Smith, Sam Whitelock (two) and Neemia Tialata going over for the All Blacks and Brian O'Driscoll, Tommy Bowe and Gordon D'Arcy touching down for consolation scores for the Irish.

Worryingly, the Irish injury toll also showed no sign of abating. John Hayes was ruled out with a virus before kick-off to be replaced by Tony Buckley and before half-time John Muldoon and Mick O'Driscoll had also departed.

Ireland began the match with an audacious drop-goal attempt from almost halfway by full-back Rob Kearney but other scoring moments in the opening 40 minutes were scant - particularly once Heaslip and O'Gara were on the sidelines.

Smith made the most of a Kearney error at the back to grab the opening try and Dan Carter added the extras to his earlier penalty.

Ireland came close to replying but Gordon D'Arcy was held up and then Heaslip had his moment of madness, kneeing a New Zealand player in the head twice.

English referee Wayne Barnes, who was greeted with boos by the partisan crowd at the start of the match, had no hesitation in brandishing the red card and Ireland's night took a turn for the worse.

Read was over for his first Test try on 21 minutes after great lead-up work by Israel Dagg, Benson Stanley and Joe Rokocoko.

Carter 's conversion made him the fourth player to reach 1,000 Test points behind Jonny Wilkinson, Neil Jenkins and Diego Dominguez.

O 'Gara departed for 10 minutes shortly afterwards for cynically holding back winger Cory Jane off the ball and from there on Ireland 's 13-man defence was opened up regularly by Dagg and Stanley, who looked confident on their debuts.

Debutant prop Franks was next over the whitewash before Cowan bagged a quickfire brace and all of them were converted by Carter for a 38-0 lead.

Tuohy rounded off the half on a positive note for Ireland with a try on debut which O 'Gara - in his 99th Test - converted.

A mistake by prop Cian Healy handed New Zealand an early chance in the second half before Dagg 's pass put Jane clear on the counter and he put Smith in for his second.

Graham Henry turned to his bench and lock Whitelock became the third player on debut to score a five-pointer within a minute of replacing Brad Thorn.

Carter 's conversion was his last meaningful action before being replaced by another new recruit Aaron Cruden.

Ireland were not going to go down without a fight and continued to play the attacking brand of rugby they promised during the week.

Brian O 'Driscoll typified that when he featured twice on his way to his 40th international try, and then Tommy Bowe pounced on a poor pass by Richie McCaw to dart over for the visitors ' third. O 'Gara was on target with both conversions.

New Zealand were not finished, though, and from a quick tap substitute Tialata rumbled over.

With Carter off the park, Piri Weepu took over goal-kicking duties and continued the perfect record of the night by banging over the conversion.

Ireland winger Andrew Trimble should have done better with seven minutes left but lost the ball forward as he went for the line.

D 'Arcy made no mistake three minutes later when he went over for Ireland 's fourth but it was young lock Whitelock who had the final say, dotting down for New Zealand 's ninth and final try.