IRELAND SKIPPER Brian O’Driscoll says his team will be out to win when they take on the world champion All Blacks on Saturday.
The visiting Ireland team went down 42-10 to hosts New Zealand at Eden Park last Saturday in the first of three Tests between the countries.
Despite the comprehensive nature of the defeat, and the odds being stacked in favour of the 2011 World Cup winners, O’Driscoll and his team-mates have no intention of lying down.
“No matter what country you play for, I think you play with a huge amount of pride and we’re not playing for second best this weekend, we play to win every time,” O’Driscoll said.
“When things go wrong you go back and try and put them right when you’re training in the week’s build up to your next Test match, so we’ve done that this week, obviously there’s a couple of changes and another opportunity to go ahead.
“To be honest we have to think about our performance and not really be overly concerned about the result and play a lot better than we did, not concede as many turnovers … and then hopefully let other parts of the game take care of themselves.”
Ireland coach Declan Kidney felt the heavy loss in the first match was not an accurate reflection of his team’s competitive display.
“We know what we want to do when we go out there and we have different plans in place when different scenarios arise – it’s a case of making the right decisions at the right time during the game,” Kidney said.
“On the scoreboard we took a heavy hit on Saturday night but we’re also long enough in it to realise that if we get our parts right then all of a sudden that closes up [the match] quite considerably.
“It is like Brian (O’Driscoll) said it’s all about getting ourselves right and that’s what we’ve been concentrating on. We had too many turnovers the last time and it’s something that we’ve taken a good look at.
“If you give that number of balls up to any side in the world they’re going to punish you, and if you give it up to the best side in the world they’ll punish you severely and that’s what happened.”
Following the second Test in Christchurch, the final match of the series takes place in Hamilton on 23 June.