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Bring on the Welsh as fans celebrate our perfect kick-off

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 Irish fan Ruth Rigby. Photo: Damien Eagers

Irish fan Ruth Rigby. Photo: Damien Eagers

Irish fan Ruth Rigby. Photo: Damien Eagers

SCOTLAND have been sent packing and next on the list is the Welsh.

The Irish rugby team stormed to victory in their Six Nations opener and loyal fans travelled from every corner of the country to cheer on Joe Schmidt's team.

Thousands of spectators flocked to the Aviva Stadium yesterday hoping for an Irish triumph over a visiting Scottish side.

With an impressive 28-6 score line, anticipation is mounting ahead of next Saturday's game against current Six Nations title holders, Wales.

It was a particularly special day for Goatstown native Claire Boyle, who celebrated her 31st birthday at the game.

"It was a fantastic day, I couldn't have asked for better to be honest, a great way to blow out my candles," she told the Herald.

For many fans, it was their first time attending an international.

Six-year-old Conor Ward got the train up from Cork with his dad Terry.

"It was a present for Conor, his Aviva debut, so it was a great start to what will hopefully be many more happy days like this," Terry said.

"It was one of the best days ever," added Conor.

Brothers George and Maurice Lee also travelled for the occasion with their sons, David (15) and Darragh (6); while Noelle Harney and her boyfriend Steven Byrne caught the bus from Galway to take their seats in the stands.

Dublin pals Jennifer McBennett and Caroline Ryall said they "had a ball" at their first ever Ireland fixture at Lansdowne Road.

"Usually I'd just go to Leinster matches, but I'm making it my mission to go to all the Ireland matches this year too, it was on my 2014 bucket list," Jennifer told the Herald.

Although they were confident Ireland could win from the outset, Killiney's Cormac and Chris Davenport were "absolutely delighted" with the result.

"We really didn't think they would win by that much, it sets everything up nicely for next weekend – there's good momentum there," said Cormac.

Captain Jamie Heaslip was awarded Man of the Match, while Brian O'Driscoll claimed his 129th international cap.

 

HEART

Brian's wife Amy Huberman was proudly shouting him on and took to Twitter beforehand to post a picture of a green heart, as well as having an exchange with actor Chris O'Dowd about her hubby's on-field accomplishment.

While fans were toasting the team last night, there was upset yesterday morning when Munster talisman Paul O'Connell had to withdraw from the team with a chest infection.

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