Australia must 'adapt' in bid to rain on Ireland's parade
Australian hooker Stephen Moore says his sides will have to adapt better to prevailing conditions to amend a poor run of results as they continue their 'spring' tour against Ireland at Lansdowne Road on Saturday.
Moore's Irish relations have usually been the ones celebrating in the recent history of this fixture – from the 2006 Lansdowne Road romp in the rain to the 2011 World Cup sensation in Eden Park, Auckland.
On both occasions, Ireland profited from the miserable conditions while, in stark contrast, the Australians struggled to cope.
"I would like to think we can do better," said Moore. "I guess the only way you put that right is through results and performances.
"I remember that night in '06 Ronan O'Gara had the ball on a string, just raking it into the corners and there were a lot of turnovers that they capitalised on.
"They played really good wet-weather rugby and they probably get more of an opportunity to do that up here than we do, but if it is like that at the weekend we need to adapt.
"Eden Park the last time we played them... we have certainly spoke a little bit about it, but not too much. We have played a lot of Tests since then, so I like to think that won't be a factor.
"All the games I remember have always been reasonably close and that goes back to long before I was involved. I was watching a few highlights there from the World Cup in '91. Everyone remembers that game, and that was won at the death. This week might not be any different – they got a draw late in Croke Park too."
Moore picks out Paul O'Connell as the Irish player he admires the most ahead of this clash between two sides under new management.
"Paul O'Connell would be the guy that I really admire as a player," he said. "It's just his longevity, and he looks like he is held in very high regard by the players and that is admirable. He is a great leader. He's a guy I have watched play at the top level for a long time – and play very well."
Israel Folau, the rangy full-back who has been a try-scoring sensation in a season which saw him score twice on his debut in the opening Lions Test, naturally cites a similar free spirit as Ireland's main danger.
"Brian O'Driscoll, with his experience, he's a big part of the team," Folau said. "They've got great players all over the pitch. He has a crack and his team-mates admire that I'm sure. We'll have to contain him on Saturday and be ready to play."
Irish Independent Sport Star Awards
Pick our magic sports moment of the year and win a trip for two to London. To view the shortlist and cast your vote click here.