The Māori All Blacks will face Ireland in July this week in two mid-week matches in Hamilton and Wellington, New Zealand rugby (NZR), announced today.
The first match will take place at FMG Waikato Stadium in Hamilton on Wednesday, June 29 at 7:05 pm and the second at Sky Stadium in Wellington on Tuesday, July 12 at 7:05 p.m. Both matches will be live and exclusive at SKY.
Ireland will bring an expanded team to take care of the two mid-week matches, which will be in addition to the three Test Steinlager Series against the All Blacks.
The Māori All Blacks played with Ireland on two previous occasions, the most famous being the New Zealand Natives 13-4 victory at Landsdowne Road in Dublin in 1888. The only other match between the two sides was at Rotorua International Stadium in 2010, where the Māori All Blacks won a thrilling Match 31-28.
Māori All Blacks head coach Clayton McMillan said:
“We look forward to welcoming Ireland, their players, leaders and fans to Aotearoa, sharing our respective cultures and celebrating our rich history through rugby. Our rivalry is more than 100 years old and that will only contribute to this opportunity. Playing with the fourth team in the world rankings in the two-match series is an exciting prospect and we expect both games to be a huge challenge.
“Playing in Aotearoa is always special and we know we have huge support in both Te Whanganui and Tara and Kirikiriroa. We look forward to spending time in these communities, teaming up with local Iwi, Māori, Māori All Blacks fans and hosting a show that our whānau and fans can be proud of. ”
McMillan names his team for the series next month, including a new captain after the respected hooker Ash Dixon left for Japan last year after leading the team to victory in a two-match series over Manu Samoa.
Ireland’s head coach Andy Farrell said:
“Māori All Blacks will provide a rigorous test of the strength and depth of our team. These are actually test matches that have a proud tradition and impressive results. This tour is a huge opportunity for the group to develop and test against the best in their own backyard. Playing five matches against such a quality opponent will be a huge benefit for the group, because we are on tour for the first time since 2018. “
Tickets for both matches will be available on public sale through AllBlacks.com and Ticketek from noon on Friday, May 20th. tickets.allblacks.com.
One child will receive free admission with each paying adult, starting at $ 5 for children and $ 20 for an adult.