Sport Rugby

Sunday 17 December 2017

the game at a glance

Hugh Farrelly

Rob Kearney

There were no outstanding performers on either side, but, given where he has come from, the Leinster full-back can take tremendous satisfaction from this outing.

Turning point

Graeme Morrison's line that prevented Paddy Wallace from effecting a potentially try-saving tackle.

Crowd watch

Warmed up by pre-match pageantry that was better suited to an Olympics opening ceremony than an early season rugby match, the crowd of just over 28,000 made a valiant attempt to create an atmosphere. However, by the second half, they were reduced to catering for their own entertainment through a succession of Mexican waves.

Magic moment

Well, there was the time that ... or, maybe, when your man ... ah, let's just go with the final whistle.

Talking point

A topic of debate afterwards revolved around Ireland's persistence in taking on ball from a standing start. Kidney, a coach who knows the value of hitting possession from depth, conceded that putting pace on the ball is a priority heading to the World Cup.

Ref watch

Not a controversial outing from Wayne Barnes, although a couple of penalties awarded against Ireland, one in the scrum, one at the breakdown, could be justifiably regarded as dubious.

What they said

Declan Kidney (Ireland coach):

"I know what we got out of it, and I know what we have to work on."

Andy Robinson (Scotland coach):

"I'm an optimist, we're here to win every game and if we go to the World Cup with the mentality we had against Ireland, I'll be very happy."

What next?

Saturday, August 13: France v Ireland, Bordeaux, 7.45

Irish Independent

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