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'It was disrespectful: Ex-All Black not happy with 'aggressive' haka in response to Ireland's Anthony Foley tribute

Irish IndependentIrish Independent 10/11/2016

Ireland beat New Zealand for the first time ever after a pulsating 40-29 victory in Chicago, but there was an equally memorable moment before the match.

Ireland opted to face down New Zealand's haka in a figure of eight, paying tribute to the Munster and Ireland legend Anthony Foley, who tragically passed away last month.

'I watched the haka and cringed' © Phil Walter/Getty Images 'I watched the haka and cringed'

Lining up across from Joe Schmidt's men, the All Blacks opted for the war cry of Kapa O Pango rather than the Ka Mate haka that they traditionally perform pre-match.

© Provided by Irish Independent

Prop Craig Dowd, who started on the All Blacks team that made the World Cup final in 1995, addressed the choice of haka in a column on ESPN.co.uk.

Dowd thought the 'aggressive' haka was disrespectful to the Irish team and says he thought it was a case of the team 'not doing their homework' on what Ireland would do before the match.

"I have to say I watched the haka and cringed," Dowd said. 

"Someone didn't do their homework in the All Blacks camp. Knowing a little bit about the Irish mentality and having had a 64-Test cap veteran and ex-Munster coach Anthony Foley die recently, with all the players wearing black armbands and having a moment's silence for him before the game, and knowing what that meant to the Irish team and the public, I thought pulling out the Kapa O Pango haka was disrespectful.

"I've been to funerals and you do the Ka Mate haka to honour a warrior and it is different to doing the battle cry, or war cry, of Kapa O Pango which is a more aggressive challenge."

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