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Keeping the faith and lightening the mood - How Andy Farrell is reaping reward for unpopular calls

Rúaidhrí O'Connor


Lightening the mood and keeping the faith has given new coach a strong start

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Andy Farrell was under pressure to make a form call at scrumhalf but so far Conor Murray is still ahead of
John Cooney. Photo: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Andy Farrell was under pressure to make a form call at scrumhalf but so far Conor Murray is still ahead of John Cooney. Photo: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

Andy Farrell was under pressure to make a form call at scrumhalf but so far Conor Murray is still ahead of John Cooney. Photo: Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Andy Farrell has made a strong start to his career as Ireland head coach by staying true to his beliefs.

It would have been easy to bow to public opinion and cast aside a host of Ireland's World Cup flops, select James Ryan as a dynamic new captain and encourage his team to throw offloads willy-nilly in his first couple of matches.

After all, he was perceived as a continuity candidate who was by Joe Schmidt's side and was under pressure to prove his difference.