By Monika Parnarauskaite
The All Blacks are still hurting after their historic loss to Ireland, ahead of their second meeting of the autumn on Saturday.
It was a remarkable 111 years and 22 consecutive defeats – but history was made as Ireland stormed to victory with an impressive 40-29 win against New Zealand last week. This put a stop to their 18-win streak, a record they shared with South Africa.
The Guardian compared the victory to that of the Chicago Cubs putting the curse of Billy the Goat behind them and finally winning the World Series after 108 years.
Speaking to The Guardian, Ireland’s Rob Kearney said: “It’s a massive day to be Irish, not just for this team but for the players who went before us.”
And it was a big deal, not only for the Irish but also for the rest of the world. Many quickly took to Twitter to congratulate the winners.
That was a special inspired performance – so well done Ireland !!! ☘️
— Paul McGinley (@mcginleygolf) November 5, 2016
Cannot believe that just happened .. congratulations Ireland . What a performance! Been a long time coming . ☘️☘️☘️
— Niall Horan (@NiallOfficial) November 5, 2016
Living legend and the all-time highest points scorer for Ireland, Ronana O’Gara, joined in on the celebrations. Even the Kiwi/Aussie actor, Russell Crowe showed just how stunned he was, as he took to Twitter to share his thoughts.
The Telegraph reported that “with nearly one in five New Zealanders also claiming Irish ancestry, this time the usual despondency was replaced by a feeling that if any team deserved to beat the All Blacks, it was Ireland”.
Jamie Wall, of Radio NZ said: “The All Blacks were ripe for an ambush. Nobody gave them [Ireland] a chance. Some were already plotting how the All Blacks would end up with an even more gigantic win streak by predicting it would last deep into next season.”
It remains to be seen which New Zealand side turns up for their rematch this weekend.