Sport Rugby

Monday 20 November 2017

Ryan looking ahead rather than dwelling on heavy loss

Donnacha Ryan, Ireland, makes a break during the game. Steinlager Series 2012, 1st Test, New Zealand v Ireland, Eden Park, Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: Sportsfile
Donnacha Ryan, Ireland, makes a break during the game. Steinlager Series 2012, 1st Test, New Zealand v Ireland, Eden Park, Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: Sportsfile

Hugh Farrelly

DONNACHA RYAN believes there is no room for despondency in the Ireland squad after last Saturday's 42-10 hammering at Eden Park and says players need to "keep trucking" to get the tour back on track in Christchurch.

"I don't play to lose," said Ryan. "I don't think anybody in the dressing-room does either.

"Fair enough, it was a bad day at the office on Saturday, but we just need to keep trucking with it and not get too despondent. We just need to refocus.

"It is about trying to hang on to the ball and put them through phases, try to test them as best we can.

"We have to get our own stuff in order before we really focus too much on them at this stage. We'll certainly try to persevere with what we're trying to do, what we did last week."

Shadow

Ryan has faced the All Blacks before, when a shadow Munster side lost narrowly in Thomond Park, but admits that New Zealand last weekend were at a different level to any opposition he has played in his career.

"Definitely, it was a very intense game," he said. "It was my first time starting against a southern hemisphere side in the green jersey and certainly the first 20, 30 minutes were very, very fast.

"There were positives in defence but we've got to help our wingers an awful lot -- when their wingers are scoring hat-tricks, we've got to help."

The reaction in the New Zealand media to Ireland's performance has been scathing but Ryan says the players cannot allow that to affect them with two Tests still to play.

"I haven't read any of it," he said. "Let's not worry about what other people are saying -- there's nothing you can really do about that, we need to get on our own case a bit more.

"When we did up the intensity we got a good few line breaks. We've got to be a lot more clinical at the breakdown. It's about trying to evolve and get smarter every time. Against New Zealand you can't afford to turn the ball over so easily."

Irish Independent

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