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Dublin: 15 °C Thursday 27 June, 2019
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How Ireland rated in the eventual rout of Georgia

It was tough viewing at times, but Joe Schmidt’s men eventually ran out convincing winners.

Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Felix Jones – 7

Difficult game for the whole back three and until the final quarter Jones was quiet with  little ball being kicked his way. Did go looking for work in tight situations and got his reward with two tries, including the finish to the best move of the match.

Craig Gilroy – 6

A mixed day for the Ulster wing, guilty of one poorly spilled pass when Ireland craved momentum, but also did his bit to inject some impetus into the second half with a trademark burst of pace before smartly kicking for territory.

Darren Cave – 5

A big chance in the number 13 shirt after coming into the squad cold last week. Aside from one great break inside his own half did little to stake a claim. Some poor passing and decisions in attack.

Gordon D’Arcy – 5

The most experienced man on the park, but the veteran failed to make his presence felt on the game.

Simon Zebo – 6

The most lively of the back three in the opening hour and was rewarded with a try. Highlight was a fine spin out of what would have been a crunching tackle. Unfortunately the carry ended in a conceded penalty after a team-mate sealed off.

Ian Madigan – 7

Showed flashes of his individual ability to exploit a gap and kicked his goals excellently. Didn’t get the best out of his backline until the visitors were well beaten in the second half.

Eoin Reddan – 7

Delivered a trademark quick-tap penalty in the first half to try to inject some life into the match. On a rare outing as captain, he marshaled his pack well and created the vital opening try.

Dave Kilcoyne – 7

Two difficult early scrums aside, the Munster man appeared to grow into the role. Added heft to the primary weapon of the maul and took a good line for Ireland’s opening try.

Richardt Strauss – 6

A couple of line-out malfunctions, but always a good carrying option to have and drew a line under a difficult year with a try.

Mike Ross – 5

Difficult 47 minutes in the scrum up against Mikheil Nariashvili. Penalised twice in the first half and was unable to give his side a consistent base. There will be more straightforward challenges.

Dave Foley – 8

A deserved man of the match. Always appeared in a good position when Ireland attempted to maul and that weapon eventually wore the opposition into submission. A very solid debut.

Mike McCarthy – 7

Almost on a par with Foley as the man directing the maul.

Dominic Ryan – 5

On first viewing it seemed a quiet debut for the Leinster back row. Will learn a great deal from the experience.

Tommy O’Donnell – 6

Carried well throughout and narrowly missed out on a first-half try when he went full stretch to try to dot down under the posts.

Robbie Diack – 7

A productive day at number eight for the Ulster man, contributed to an effective maul and had a hand in Simon Zebo’s try.

Replacements:

Rodney Ah You – 5

Kept a flagging Georgia scrum quiet for the final half hour and contributed with some big carries in open field.

Sean Cronin – 4

Picked up where he left off last week with a solid outing off the bench. Should remain as Ireland’s hooker for the Australia Test.

Devin Toner – 5

Part of the raft of replacements that finally steamrolled Georgia into submission. Though his replacement in the starting XV was impressive, it will take much more to dislodge him from his post as Paul O’Connell’s wing man.

Robin Copeland – 4

Wasn’t afforded much opportunity make an impression as Ireland were already piercing the defence.

Kieran Marmion – 5

As ever, was a big threat around the fringes and instigated some exciting moments in the second half as Ireland pulled away.

Ian Keatley – 5

Replaced Gordon D’Arcy after the hour and ended up having a bigger impact on the game with some fine hands especially in the lead up to Jones’ second try.

Stuart Olding – 6

The most impressive of the replacements darting in on some excellent angles and showing his passing skills for Jones’ first try.

As it happened: Ireland v Georgia, November Tests

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About the author:

Sean Farrell

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