Saturday 21 July 2018

O'Mahony demands Ireland improve their discipline to keep Australia at bay

 

Ireland captain Peter O'Mahony. Photo: Sportsfile
Ireland captain Peter O'Mahony. Photo: Sportsfile

Rúaidhrí O'Connor

Peter O'Mahony has called on his Ireland team to tighten up their discipline as they look to bounce back and level the Test series against Australia with a win in Melbourne this morning (11.05).

Joe Schmidt's side pride themselves on their discipline and are unhappy with the 10 penalties they conceded last week.

The head coach was particularly disappointed with a second-half incident that saw dissent from Conor Murray punished with a penalty, describing it as "unacceptable".

Ireland have worked on a number of areas as they look to turn around last week's 18-9 defeat and O'Mahony said discipline has been a particular focus.

"It's always an area that we know is very important to us, our discipline. Ten penalties is considerably more than we give away as an average. So we've certainly spoken about it," the captain said.

"Obviously, the less access you give to a team like Australia the better. You saw with 10 penalties last week, you're going to struggle so we certainly spoke about it during the week."

The Munster skipper has been impressed by the team's response in training and says their confidence has not been knocked by a first loss in 13 matches.

"You can't go back and look at what you've done to perform well, but it all isn't dumped out the window," he said.

"We've done a lot of good stuff this year that you can build on and you don't become a poor team overnight.

"We know for a fact that there's a lot of things in the game last week that we could have done better and they're the things we've tried to focus on this week and try and improve on; things we did last week that are uncharacteristic and need to be addressed and put right.

"I must say the way the lads reacted during the week I was very impressed by.

"You could see guys were physically and emotionally hurt last week after losing.

"We've made a habit of winning in this group now and losing is not something that we like.

"No professional likes to lose but this group in particular, we don't like to lose and guys were hurt, but there was a huge enthusiasm to get back out and put it right and get back out on the training pitch and work on things that didn't go right.

"And there was a bit of hurt but there was a real hunger to get back out on the training pitch.

"So that was something that would give you confidence."

Irish Independent

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