Ireland remain unbeaten in the 2014 Six Nations Championship following a hugely impressive 26-3 victory over the reigning champions Wales at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin on Saturday. The match had been hugely anticipated with both sides recording first round wins against Scotland and Ital, respectively, plus the Irish provincial rugby sides had been in such good form during the European Heineken Cup competition which preceded the Six Nations.
Ireland scored the only tries of the game with Ulster flanker Chris Henry and replacement fly-half Paddy Jackson crossing the white wash in Dublin. The Irish number 10 Jonathan Sexton added 14 points from the boot. The Irish forwards exerting total dominance throughout the match thanks to the Munster duo of second row Paul O’Connell and flanker Peter O’Mahony. The latter putting in a stellar performance which landed him the Man of the Match. struggled to cause any problems up front.
A disappointed Welsh coach, Warren Gatland, admitted that his side were second best on their trip to Ireland as be said after the match:
“No excuses. We were dominated up front and that is what made the difference. Credit to Ireland, they were a better team than we were today. We were well beaten. It was the most disappointing performance from us since I have been the Wales coach… The test now for us is how we bounce back and show character. You do get a bad day at the office sometimes and today was a bad day at the office.”
Ireland now have two weeks until their next crunch fixture away against old foes England in London. England should be relishing the visit of Ireland following their own victory over Scotland in Edinburgh. Ireland will be chasing their first Triple Crown in a number of years in what promises to be a thrilling and bruising encounter in Twickenham.