Andy Farrell & Paul O’Connell have words at half-time during Springboks clash

Not happy.

Everything worked out in the end – but the opening exchanges didn’t exactly go to plan for Ireland against South Africa on Saturday night, with their lineout malfunctioning big time.

Ireland lost three of their lineouts in the opening few minutes but managed to turn things around eventually, as they came away with a crucial 13-8 win over the reigning world champions.

Paul O’Connell has been praised for his work on Ireland’s lineout in the past, with it becoming a powerful weapon for the number-one ranked team in the world during their current impressive reign of form.

But when things don’t go so well – he also has to take the criticism too with head coach Andy Farrell spotted having a go at O’Connell just before half-time.

Speaking the game, Farrell said Ireland’s “discipline” at the lineout was good in the second half.

“That’s the quality of the opposition. Staying at it was absolutely the key. Our discipline in the second half in the lineout was good. We rolled with the punches and came out on the right side,” Farrell said.

“It’s wonderful to win, but there’s not much in it between the two sides. We know what that feels like further down the line, to learn those lessons with a win. When you love defending as much as we did in that game, that stands us in good stead.”

No doubt if Ireland are to go far at this year’s Rugby World Cup they will need to make sure their lineout doesn’t malfunction this badly again.

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