Friday 23 February 2018

Video - 'These lads in green have certainly got balls': Ireland's epic South African battle turned into a documentary

Harry Clarke

They didn't leave with an elusive series win but Ireland's intense three-test tour of South Africa last summer was still historic and hugely memorable.

An Irish team reduced to 14 men, after the controversial red card shown to CJ Stander, was able to hold off the Springboks and record a first ever win in South Africa in the opening test.

Read more: Brian O'Driscoll and Paul O'Connell were both invited to the 'most exclusive club' in rugby last night

The following week Joe Schmidt's side built a handsome lead before succumbing to fatigue and South African power before narrowly going down in the third and final test to come out on the wrong side of a close fought series.

Results aside, each game was played at a massive intensity and in what should be a treat for fans, a documentary was filmed chronicling Ireland's time in South Africa.

Vodafone have produced “Irish Rugby: What We Did Last Summer”, and it is set to be a fascinating behind the scenes look at how Ireland tried to take down the Springboks.

Contributors include Jamie Heaslip, Joe Schmidt, Rory Best and Andy Farrell and judging by the trailer, viewers will get a sense of how the players got on off the field too.

One particularly cracking quote from Ireland's new defence coach stands out, uttered in reference to the team's herculean effort in winning a game in South Africa with just 14 men.

"These lads in green, they've certainly got balls you know."

The documentary will be shown on RTE One on Thursday November 10 at 10.15pm and repeated on Saturday November 19 at 3.30pm.


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