Ireland take on the All Blacks in the second Test of their New Zealand tour this weekend. Here’s all you need to know about the match.
Where and when is it on?
Saturday's match takes place at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin with an 8.05am Irish time kick-off.
What’s the team news?
Mack Hansen has returned to the Ireland team in what is the only change to the starting XV for Saturday's second Test against the All Blacks in Dunedin. Hansen replaces Keith Earls, who has started both games on tour thus far.
Johnny Sexton passed his HIA protocols on Tuesday and as such, the Ireland captain was always expected to keep his place alongside Jamison Gibson-Park.
Ireland team to play New Zealand on Saturday – H Keenan; M Hansen, G Ringrose, R Henshaw, J Lowe; J Sexton (capt), J Gibson-Park; A Porter, D Sheehan, T Furlong; T Beirne, J Ryan; P O'Mahony, J van der Flier, C Doris. Reps: R Herring, C Healy, F Bealham, K Treadwell, J Conan, C Murray, J Carbery, B Aki.
Meanwhile, the All Blacks have been dealt a major blow ahead of the second Test, as veteran lock Sam Whitelock has been ruled out.
Whitelock suffered delayed concussion and is a doubt for the remainder of the Series.
New Zealand have also been hit with another Covid disruption, as Tupou Vaa’i is the latest player to test positive. That means the All Blacks are now without two locks for this weekend, and potentially the third Test.
What to read and listen to on Independent.ie?
We have plenty of pre-match build-up for you to enjoy.
Cian Tracey is in New Zealand and he has detailed what he feels Ireland need to do to level the series below and looked at Andy Farrell's out-half dilemma and Ireland's reliance on Johnny Sexton.
Cian was also there to witness the opening Test defeat and gives his views here, as do former Ireland internationals Tony Ward, Mick Galwey, Dan Leavy and Bernard Jackman.
Outside of the result, the controversy over the HIA issue have continued after Sexton's injury and while Brendan Fanning appreciates that Andy Farrell can only base his selection decisions on the information he's given by the medical staff, his concerns on the process are once again outlined below.
On this week's episode of The Left Wing, Will Slattery and Luke Fitzgerald are joined by Cian Tracey and Liam Napier of the New Zealand Herald to discuss all the latest news from the Ireland tour.
The lads kick off by discussing whether Johnny Sexton should start against the All Blacks in the second test or should Joey Carbery get the nod with a view to the 2023 World Cup?
And Irish Independent rugby correspondent Rúaidhrí O'Connor and Cian joined Sinéad Kissane on the Left Wing Live to discuss the first Test and you can catch up on that here. We'll also have a full new episode for you later in the week.
What is Ireland’s record against the All Blacks like?
Since first meeting on 25 November 1905, when New Zealand won 15-0, it was mainly one way traffic for 111 years with the All Blacks winning 27 games with a solitary draw in 1973 all Ireland had to show for their efforts.
That finally changed in 2016 with a famous victory at Soldier's Field in Chicago, and Ireland have added another two wins since, including last autumn's 29-20 win at the Aviva, before Saturday's defeat.
New Zealand - 30 wins
Ireland - 3 wins
Draws - 1
Where can I watch the match?
The game will be shown live on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Action with coverage starting at 7.30am. It will also be streamed on the Sky Go app.
What are the odds?
The All Blacks are heavy favourites at 1/8 with Ireland 11/2 and the draw priced at 25/1.
What the latest from the camps?
“It’s never a no-brainer when you’ve got to go through a process, but the only thing here that matters is Johnny.
“We always, as medics and coaching staff and players alike, err on the side of caution first and foremost – and go through the right process.
“The process was passed and he’s fit to play. He’s bright as a button and he has been all week, so it wasn’t concussion, and we move on with the rules. The only thing that matters is the health of the player, and we’ve done that this week.”
“I just had to do all the necessary tests. Obviously, I got the knock in unfortunate circumstances, slipping into a tackle. But I was fine, honestly.
“I went off for tests expecting to come back on and wasn’t allowed, which is fair enough. That’s what it’s there for. It’s there to protect players, if there is a suspected concussion that they are kept off, and that’s what happened with the independent doctor.
“As frustrating as it was for me at the time, it’s just life. Moved on, did all the tests and, obviously, passed all of them with flying colours.”
“There is no secret, Johnny is one of the best 10s in the world, one of the best players in the world, so you want to be dealing with a full deck.
“We want to be playing with as full a bill of health as possible and there isn’t anyone you can say you can afford to have out with regard to having three games in the space of nine or ten days. He is hugely important to us, obviously our captain.
“I am far from a medical practitioner but he has been in good form.”
“I can't answer that question (on Sexton's availability) from their perspective because I don't know the circumstances.
“What I do know is that from our perspective with Sammy (Whitelock) is, the protocols are crystal clear.
“If it looks like you have taken a knock and then you fail a HIA, you go to a 12-day programme. That's pretty crystal clear to us.”