All Blacks' thoughts turn to home after 'quake

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Lynn McConnell     14 Nov 2016     Getty Images

Coach Ian Foster said the team were just boarding their flight from Rome to Dublin when news started coming through.

Many texts had been exchanged checking on family situations and while all was ok, Foster said the feelings of the side went out to those affected by the latest earthquake.

Prop Wyatt Crockett, from Christchurch, said he had been in touch with home to make sure everyone was all right and once that was confirmed it was a case of thoughts going out to everyone affected.

"It seems to be right across the country, probably just about everyone in the country felt this earthquake," he said.

Crockett said there was an expectation there would be a thorough review of the Chicago game for them on Monday morning and that would set the trend for the week of preparation for the rematch in Dublin against Ireland.

"I'm sure there will a bit of edge among the group right from now (Sunday night Dublin time) really. After the game [Italy] the boys minds started to shift into the game against the Irish pretty quickly. It's exciting and [we're] looking forward to it," he said.

Foster said lock Brodie Retallick came through the Italy Test symptom-free and team management were delighted with that. Sam Whitelock remained on track but had some hurdles to clear over the next two days to test his hamstring in a game-like situation.

Foster said it had been a good game in Rome and players who had limited opportunities previously had played very well. There had been good preparation by that group for the game and a lot of energy went into the performance and that would be considered in the selection to play Ireland.

While it wasn't unusual to meet a side who had beaten the All Blacks so soon afterwards, as they played Australia and South Africa several times a year, and last year lost to Australia in Sydney and then met them a week later in Auckland.

But it was an exciting challenge to prepare to play Ireland again so soon after they had played 'really, really well' in Chicago to record their country's first win over the All Blacks.