Air New Zealand offers ‘safety tips’ to Irish rugby supporters
Air New Zealand has offered Irish rugby fans some tongue-in-cheek "safety tips" before the countries face off in their Rugby World Cup quarter-final in Tokyo tomorrow.
The highly tipped All Blacks are straining not to seem cocky ahead of the match, but the national flag carrier has no such qualms, urging Ireland fans to brace for impact.
In a made-to-go-viral online ad, "flight attendants" give a safety briefing in a house occupied by an increasingly forlorn trio of Irish supporters, telling them "to lean forward into the crouch position with your head in your hands" in the event of an early New Zealand try.
The All Blacks are favourites to win the clash and go on to lift the Webb Ellis Cup for an unprecedented third successive time.
But they have struggled in recent head-to-head games with the Irish.
"Having won two out of the last three games, some Irish supporters may be expecting a pleasant journey," the faux flight attendants note.
"However, we happen to think you might be in for some upcoming turbulence.
"Should the game go down to the wire, an oxygen mask will automatically drop down. Otherwise, please remain seated until your disappointment has come to a complete halt."
"Anything to add @AerLingus?" the company tweeted, taunting Ireland's national flag carrier into a response.
Meanwhile, lock Brodie Retallick has returned for the All Blacks in arguably their strongest side for tomorrow.
The Kiwis gave squad players and those returning from injury some game time and trialled combinations against Canada and Namibia, but were unable to field their top side against Italy after the match was cancelled due to Typhoon Hagibis.
Retallick and hooker Codie Taylor were the only changes to the pack that opened their campaign against South Africa with a 23-13 victory in Yokohama.
Retallick returned against Namibia on Oct 6 after two months out with a dislocated shoulder.
Captain Kieran Read, who was rested for the Namibia game, returns at No. 8 to lead the side in his 125th Test, while the dual playmaker axis of Beauden Barrett at fullback and Richie Mo'unga at flyhalf has been reinstated.
- AFP, REUTERS
- Wales v France (3.15pm)
- Japan v South Africa (6.15pm)