Ireland laboured to an error-strewn 22-10 victory over an emotional and fiercely committed United States in their Rugby World Cup opener at a cold and wet Stadium Taranaki on Sunday.
Both teams wore black armbands and observed a period of silence as cheers of "USA, USA" rang out before the game, marking the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks in the United States in which nearly 3000 people died.
Despite enjoying total dominance up front throughout the Pool C clash, handling errors, slips on the wet field, misplaced passes and poor execution meant Ireland missed out on a four-try bonus point.
Winger Tommy Bowe scored two tries with hooker Rory Best adding another but Irish first five eight Jonathan Sexton managed just two from six kicks at goal.
Ireland: Tries: Tommy Bowe (2), Rory Best. Penalty: Jonathan Sexton. Conversions: Sexton, Ronan O'Gara.
USA: Try: Paul Emerick. Penalty: James Paterson. Conversion: Nese Malifa.
Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa).