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Ireland riled by multiple NZ high tackles

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 21/11/2016 Nick Purewal

Ben Smith of New Zealand (R) and Andrew Trimble of Ireland contest the ball during the international rugby match between Ireland and the New Zealand All Blacks at Aviva Stadium on November 19, 2016 in Dublin, Ireland. © Phil Walter/Getty Images Ben Smith of New Zealand (R) and Andrew Trimble of Ireland contest the ball during the international rugby match between Ireland and the New Zealand All Blacks at Aviva Stadium on November 19, 2016 in Dublin, Ireland. The number of All Blacks high tackles has left a sour taste for Ireland team management following the home side's Test defeat in Dublin.

Ireland manager Mick Kearney revealed the citing officer raised 12 incidents - 11 relating to New Zealand - from Saturday's Test which New Zealand won 21-9.

He described that figure as "disappointing".

New Zealand flanker Sam Cane faces a disciplinary hearing for his hit that left second five-eighth Robbie Henshaw concussed. Cane received a penalty only for the incident.

Malakai Fekitoa also faces a disciplinary hearing over his high tackle on Simon Zebo, for which the All Blacks centre received a yellow card.

World Rugby issued warnings before the November Tests of a clampdown on dangerous tackles.

"The evidence is fairly clear that Robbie took a shoulder to the jaw, which knocked him unconscious before he hit the ground," Kearney said.

"World Rugby had said if these incidents occur then you are liable to a red card, possibly. So that obviously didn't happen at the weekend.

"It is disappointing, to be honest. There were a number of tackles and bangs around the head."

If Fekitoa, who scored two tries, is found guilty of an "alleged dangerous tackle" at his disciplinary hearing he could face a suspension.

Cane faces the same situation, although he has already been ruled out of this week's tour-ending Test against France with injury.

"The facts speak for themselves," Kearney said.

"We don't cite anybody. We don't make complaints to the citing officer because they have the angles to look at the game."

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