Belfast Telegraph

All Blacks showdown: Five other memorable misses in Irish sport

By Adrian Rutherford

New Zealand v Ireland, rugby international, 2012

A last-gasp Dan Carter drop goal denied Ireland a famous win in New Zealand.

The Irish led at half-time in Christchurch through a Conor Murray try and penalties from Jonny Sexton.

A New Zealand try after the break nudged the All Blacks in front but a Sexton penalty with 11 minutes left tied the scores at 19-19.

With New Zealand down to 14 men it looked as if Ireland would go on and make history. But Carter's drop goal broke Irish hearts yet again.

Republic of Ireland v Spain, World Cup last 16, 2002

The Republic crashed out of the 2002 World Cup on penalties after staging a superb comeback against Spain.

A last-minute Robbie Keane penalty took the last 16 tie in South Korea into extra time. But Matt Holland, David Connolly and Kevin Kilbane missed in the shoot-out as Spain squeezed into the last eight.

Eddie Irvine, 1999 Formula One World Championship

The Northern Ireland driver (left) went into the final race of the season in Japan with the 1999 F1 World Drivers' Championship in his grasp.

Four race wins left him four points clear of the chasing pack.

In the title showdown at Suzuka, a finish in front of Mika Hakkinen would guarantee Irvine the title. In the race, Irvine struggled for pace and finished third behind Hakkinen and runner-up Schumacher, handing the championship to Hakkinen.

Ireland v South Africa, 2007 Cricket World Cup

Ireland came within a whisker of pulling off a massive shock against South Africa – at the time the top side in one-day cricket.

At one stage South Africa were reduced to 91 for 8, but they recovered to 192 all out.

The 193 target was attainable, but Ireland lost their nerve in the final stages, eventually losing by a slender 35 runs.

Ireland v England, 2013 Euro Hockey Championships

Ireland missed out on a semi-final place on goal difference after drawing 2-2 with England. Late Ireland pressure almost led to a winner but the English held on for the draw to guarantee a second-placed finish in their pool.

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