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Page last updated at 07:34 GMT, Friday, 18 June 2010 08:34 UK

New Zealand Maori 31-28 Ireland

New Zealand Maori (18) 31
Tries: Gear, Sweeney, Lowe Cons: McAlister, Ripia Pens: McAlister (3), Ripia Ireland (18) 28
Try: Wallace Con: Sexton Pens: Sexton (7)

Ireland centre Paddy Wallace in action against New Zealand Maori
Paddy Wallace scored Ireland's try at the start of the second half

Ireland fought back to lead after trailing 15-0 but New Zealand Maori recovered to claim a famous victory in Friday's centenary international.

The Maoris made a blistering start and got tries from Hosea Gear and Dwayne Sweeney inside the first 14 minutes.

But repeated infringing by the locals allowed Jonathan Sexton to leave it 18-18 at half-time with six penalties.

Paddy Wallace's try gave Ireland the lead but replacement Karl Lowe touched down to clinch the Maori victory.

Fly-half Jonathan Sexton kicked 23 points for Ireland, landing his first eight kicks at goal, but missed the crucial ninth, a penalty in the 73rd minute.

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The Irish fielded a completely different team to that which started the test against the All Blacks, and they were left reeling by an impressive opening blast from the Maoris.

Luke McAlister landed the first of his three penalties in the second minute and then winger Gear stormed through for the opening try.

The Irish were struggling to get hold of the ball and were in deeper trouble when Sweeney's touchdown was converted by McAlister.

Sexton and McAlister exchanged penalties to leave it 18-3 but indiscipline by the home side saw Sexton reel off four more kicks to level matters before the break.

When Irish skipper Geordan Murphy passed back inside for centre Paddy Wallace to get a try in the first minute of the second half, the match looked to have turned the way of the tourists.

But, they failed to complete the job, and a McAlister penalty and Lowe's try midway through the half saw the Maoris regain the lead.

Sexton, with a 100% record, had a chance to bring Ireland level again but sent his penalty wide of the far post.

New Zealand Maori: R Robinson, S Maitland, D Sweeney, L McAlister, H Gear, S Brett, A Smith; B Murray, C Flynn, B Afeaki, H Triggs, J Hoeata, L Messam (capt), T Latimer, C Bourke. Replacements: D Coles, C Newlands, R Graham, K Lowe, R Tipuna, W Ripia, J Willison

Ireland: G Murphy (captain); S Horgan, G Duffy, P Wallace, J Murphy; J Sexton, E Reddan; M Horan, J Fogarty, T Court, E O'Donoghue, D Tuohy, R Ruddock, N Ronan, C Henry.
Replacements: S Cronin, J Hayes, D O'Callaghan, D Wallace, P Stringer, R O'Gara, R Kearney.

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see also
Murphy says Irish have work to do
18 Jun 10 |  Irish
Irish fall to defeat by the Maoris
18 Jun 10 |  Irish
Murphy handed Ireland captaincy
15 Jun 10 |  Irish
Heaslip gets five-week suspension
13 Jun 10 |  Irish
Kidney pinpoints Ireland mistakes
12 Jun 10 |  Rugby Union
New Zealand 66-28 Ireland
12 Jun 10 |  Rugby Union

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