Kaino expects more of the same, with an edge

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Lynn McConnell     16 Nov 2016     Getty Images

Kaino said Ireland had been passionate in their game in respect to the late Anthony Foley and he felt the loss because the All Blacks had their own bereavement in their collective family.

And in wearing the jersey that Luke Romano would have worn had he not had to return home as a result of that bereavement, Kaino felt he had not played up to the standard that jersey required and he had not given it the respect it deserved.

Kaino said if selected he was looking forward to playing in a familiar position.

"I didn't really mind slotting into the second row - it was just a matter of executing my role there and I probably just needed to focus on basics instead of other things I needed to do.

"I tried to be Brodie Retallick and do what he did. He dominates in those areas by just doing the basics well and first things first and maybe I overlooked that and tried to think too much," he said.

Ireland had been 'menacing', very strong with the ball in hand, direct and that would continue and possibly even more with Sean O'Brien likely to be back in the mix as an abrasive type of player.

Kaino said he considered O'Brien one of the best among his rivals and the All Blacks felt it was always good to play against the best.

"It will be a great contest and he will be champing at the bit to get out there and play us," he said.

Retallick said getting back on the field in Rome had been good as he hadn't touched the ball in a game since the Bledisloe Cup game in Auckland.

He said there was an edge around the game after what happened in Chicago but playing in Dublin was always a huge challenge but the All Blacks were a little disappointed that they had probably let themselves down in Chicago, he said, and they had the chance to rectify that.

"We've got to take control of the physical battle, our execution and just play our game," he said.

Kaino said if both Retallick and Sam Whitelock were back in the side it would give confidence to the pack and the team not only because of their experience but for the security they gave the lineout and the unseen work they did at the breakdown which added a lot to their team performance.

But the All Blacks also knew that they had let themselves down in Chicago because the basics, which they usually did so well, were not done well and Ireland had seen opportunities and had punished them.

Retallick said there had been a lot of talk about the lineout where Ireland had some great height but they had 'out-physicaled' them and would look to do the same again and the All Blacks needed to be ready for that.

Kaino said Ireland's style hadn't changed much over the years but they competed for much longer, and they had the ability to punish sides if they let their guard down.