One of the most memorable occassions from Rugby World Cup 2011 is the Leadup to the Ireland vs USA match in New Plymouth. The match took place on the tenth anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States of America. The USA players put in a great performance as they prevented Ireland from scoring a bonus point as they USA Eagles showed strong defence in going down 22-10. It was a long day for the side as they started it by having a mass in a local church and the players were clearly emotional. It continued throughout the day and a magical performace of the USA national anthem, the Star-Spangled Banner was warmly received by the New Zealand crowd who greatly appreciated the significance of the occassion.
It was not only a reminder of the importance of paying tribute to the victims of the tragedy but also an appreciation of the importance of the USA in global rugby. The Eagles went on to give Ireland a good match and also played well vs Italy in addition to defeating Russia.