What Ireland Did In The Final Moments Of The First-Half Yesterday Is The Sign Of A Special Team

Ruthless.

You’re away from home playing at Twickenham, one of rugby’s famous fortresses. You’re just about halfway through what is probably the biggest game of your professional career to date.

But you have a 14-5 lead. You’re tired an the clock is in red. You make a bit of ground off your first couple of phases. But then you’re smashed in the next couple behind the gainline.

What do you do next? Surely you boot the ball out? You have a nine-point lead. You’re away from home. The job is half-done. Get back into the dressing room and regroup. Lets not take a chance here.

Not this Ireland team. 10 phases in your 21-year-old winger finds himself in a bit of space. He puts boot to ball and backs himself. He gets an unlucky bounce and the ball crashes off his knee. But he doesn’t give up. He backs himself.

Jacob Stockdale scores the try, Joey Carbery converts. 44 minutes have passed and the whistle finally blows. Ireland now lead 21-5 going into the break.

Game over.