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Here's how Ireland should respond to the haka

There may be murder on the dancefloor if Declan Kidney’s men react incorrectly to the visitors’ haka.

YESTERDAY WE BROUGHT you the five best hakas over the years. It caused some debate on Twitter, the comments section and elsewhere.

Now, here’s how Declan Kidney’s men can answer the challenge that the All Blacks will throw down on Saturday.

1. Wales stand their ground

This in my opinion – I must say it several time a day – is how to stand up to the indigenous war dance of the antipodean islanders.

Rumours swirled around Cardiff before this game that Kiwi, Warren Gatland had prepared his boys with a New Zealand riposte – the Welsh stare-down was pure Swansea chipper scrap, however.

Referee Jonathan Kaplan spoke to the Kiwi captain McCaw and asked him to get ready for the kick off. He politely declined. He moved over to Ryan Jones, Wales’ captain and asked him to move off saying, ‘They get it Ryan’.

Jones replied that ‘They have to break first’. They did.


2. Ireland meet the challenge at Lansdowne Road

Deccie might want to stick this one on the lap-top for the team room audio-visual presentation. Willie Anderson leads the Irish right into the tourists’ faces. Some in New Zealand branded it disrespectful. Spine-tingling.


3.  Chabal leads Les Bleus

It had all gone horribly wrong for France at the World Cup in 2007. Hosting the tournament for the first time, they had lost the opening match to Argentina, meaning that instead of playing all their matches in Paris, they were suddenly faced with a quarter final against favourites New Zealand in Cardiff.

When the anthems died down, the All Blacks formed up for the haka, and the French lined up and took off their track suite tops revealing red, white and blue T-shirts forming the French flag, with a snarling Sebastian Chabal at its centre.

This footage was shot by the director of the Blair Witch Project after too much ale in Cardiff, incidentally. Sacre Bleu.


4. Ireland U20s become men

When Ireland played the ‘Baby Blacks’ in the 2009 U20 Rugby World Cup in Japan, they decided to raise the bar. The New Zealand U20 side, performing the traditional Kamate Haka found themselves faced with an advancing Irish side, who, despite the referee trying to keep them back finished inches away from the Kiwis, resulting in some pushing and shoving between the sides.

Ireland were beaten 17-0 however.

5. Richard Cockerill starts as he means to go on

What not to do on your debut, No 1: take on the haka.

Leicester hooker Richard Cockerill faced down opposite number Norm Hewitt. New Zealand ran out comfortable winners, unsurprisingly.


What not to do: Phil Kearns winked during the haka; his Wallabies got demolished by a Jonah Lomu led side, 43-6. Possibly don’t throw blades of grass in the air either like pre-spear-tacke Brian O’Driscoll.

It’s probably better to stare at the ground, essentially.

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