| 5.2°C Dublin

Garry set to be put through ringer

Close

Garry Ringrose during an Ireland rugby press conference at Carton House in Maynooth, Co Kildare yesterday. Pic: Sportsfile

Garry Ringrose during an Ireland rugby press conference at Carton House in Maynooth, Co Kildare yesterday. Pic: Sportsfile

Garry Ringrose during an Ireland rugby press conference at Carton House in Maynooth, Co Kildare yesterday. Pic: Sportsfile

The turbulence on the Ireland flight coming back from Chicago was nothing compared to the discomfort Argenti a can cause at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday evening (live, RTE 2, KO 6.30).

The sleep patterns of the Irish players were compromised by something of a rough ride for ten minutes or thereabouts on their return from the Windy City.

The sense of uncertainty in a tube hurtling through the sky affects people differently.

Some are calm under pressure; others are not so cool when something is outside of their control.

The last 20 years of dealing with the admirable Argentinians, especially at the Rugby World Cup, has been a rocky ride for Ireland.

The threats the South Americans pose now are different to those of the infamous 1999 World Cup quarter-final play-off loss in Lens.

Menacing

They have moved away from leaning almost entirely on the menacing muscle of their front eight towards the mercurial magnificence of their back seven.

Quite simply, Argentina rank as one of the most difficult assignments when it comes to a test of defensive mettle.

"Everyone needs to be on the same page with our defensive system," noted Garry Ringrose at Carton House yesterday.

"Whatever the call is, it is about backing each other up to break down the threat.

"The inside hustle will be pretty important this week with guys being able to beat guys one-on-one.

"With them being able to step back inside, there will be increased emphasis on being able to cover the guy inside you.

"That's just one element," he explained.

"In any defensive system, you want to stick to what works.

"It will be a challenge with the kind of expansive game they play."

It is also the kind of challenge defence coach Andy Farrell always embraces.

The arch-motivator is passionate about what he does and this seeps through into the bones of his men. That goes for Ringrose as much as - maybe even more than - most, given the responsibility of manning the outside centre channel.

"It can be difficult at 13," he said.

"But, it's usually helped by, or dependent on, everyone else around you. I mean some games would be pretty easy for me at 13 when everyone else gets their stuff right.

"I think it's a collective thing. It never relies on one person defensively."

The whole system is not built on the back of one man. But, some are more burdened than others, especially when it comes to controlling flashing Argentinian attackers in the wider channels.

"It [defence] does play an important part and it will against Argentina with the game they play," said Ringrose.

"Everyone will know that they have to be on point for it to be successful on the weekend."

The 23-year-old Ringrose has an analytical mind and always starts at what he can do before moving on to what anyone else can.

"In terms of my own game, I don't know, I even got beaten once or twice on the inside shoulder the last day and probably had opportunities to make more aggressive impact tackles that I didn't take full advantage of," he explained.

"That will be something for me, if I get the shot this week, that I'll look to improve on."

One of the keys to Farrell's defensive system is not to be beaten on the inside shoulder.

Ringrose has been honest enough to offer up the fact that he was caught out in that way against the Italians.

After all, you can't change what you don't acknowledge.

"There'd be a couple of rules. It doesn't just boil down to one," responded Ringrose.

"That'd certainly be a big one for everyone because that's usually what happens for line-breaks for any opposition - being beaten on the inside shoulder.

"So, it's not something you want to do. It'd probably get called up on a video session."


Privacy