Legendary New Zealand rugby player Jonah Lomu believes that Ireland are the dark horse for this year’s World Cup in New Zealand later in the season.
Although he is confident that his native New Zealand can claim the title at the tournament, Lomu feels that Ireland’s ageing squad was not being given the credit they deserved:
“If there’s a team that you have to be wary about, and not many people are talking about them, it’s Ireland”, Lomu said, on a promotional tour in the Cook Islands.
“Purely because I’ve watched a lot of their teams. I’ve watched Leinster play in the Heineken Cup and they were very impressive, especially up front. A lot of those players are coming to the end of their career and they’ll put everything on the line”.
Ireland are currently in fourth place in the International Rugby Board (IRB) world rankings, making them the highest-placed northern hemisphere team.
Lomu added that conditions in New Zealand would suit the Irish, and with no one talking of them they could emerge as the surprise packet of the competition:
“They’re going to slide in under the radar because I think everybody’s talking about how the (Queensland) Reds have beaten the Crusaders for Australia and France coming without (Sebastien) Chabal. They’re just going to do their job and do what they need to do”.
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