Andy Farrell hopeful of Johnny Sexton's availability for second Test against New Zealand

Johnny Sexton suffered a concussion during the first Test at Eden Park
Johnny Sexton suffered a concussion during the first Test at Eden Park

Ireland head coach Andy Farrell is hopeful that skipper Johnny Sexton will be available for the second Test against New Zealand to be played in Dunedin on Saturday.

Sexton was forced to leave the field during the half-hour mark in the opening Test at Eden Park following a collision for a Head Injury Assessment and did not return in the second half.

"Johnny's good, he's in fine spirits," said Farrell.

"HIA three will hopefully be passed in a few days and if that happens, then it's concussion not confirmed."

When asked why did the 36-year-old return back to the field at Eden Park if he had passed the second stage of HIA, Farrell replied:

"Because they tested him and deemed him not fit to go on because there's all different sort of tests that go on," he explained.

"You can stumble in your studs, you know, and not go off."

Ireland dominated the opening minutes of the game with a try from Keith Earls but subsequently lost momentum with Ardie Savea scoring twice for the All Blacks while Jordie Barrett, Sevu Reece, Quinn Tupaea and Pita Sowakula all touched down.

Even though Garry Ringrose and Bundee Aki, who led them during the game against Maori All Blacks scored second half tries, New Zealand were the better of the two teams as they completed a 42-19 win to take a 1-0 lead in the series.

"I thought we created quite a bit actually, but ultimately... you've got to score points against the All Blacks, there's no doubt about that," said Farrell.

"Some of those tries that they scored, they didn't have to work too hard for them and on the back of that there's been some decent rugby that's been played for us.

"But if you switch off for a second you pay for it, and the scoreline was obviously too big at halftime, wasn't it?"


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