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'It's not just thrown out the window': Ireland sticking with plan despite defeat

The flanker said Ireland have reasons to believe they can level the series next weekend.

O'Mahony in action at Suncorp Stadium.
O'Mahony in action at Suncorp Stadium.
Image: Mark Kolbe

A FIRST TEST defeat in 15 months for Joe Schmidt’s Ireland and while they can really have few complaints about the outcome of this series opener, the visitors will head into the week ahead with regrets aplenty.

A huge chunk of the 46,273 crowd inside Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium were left disappointed as they witnessed Ireland’s 12-game winning run being ground to a halt by a physical and clinical performance from Australia.

Michael Cheika’s side produced a resilient defensive display to keep Ireland try-less and showed their clinical edge at the other end, scoring tries in either half from Bernard Foley and the outstanding David Pocock.

Ireland saw their possession slowed up by Pocock and Australia’s tireless back row unit and, as a result, were left hugely frustrated around the breakdown as they denied the type of ball which saw them dominate teams during the Six Nations.

It was an 11th successive reversal to the Wallabies Down Under and Ireland head to Melbourne needing a first win on Australian soil since 1979 to keep the series alive.

Peter O’Mahony admitted afterwards the the intensity and physicality levels, particularly in the first half, were off the charts.

“That first-half was one of the quickest I’ve played in my career,” the Munster flanker said.

“Every time I come up against Australia the intensity and physicality is second to none. There wasn’t a lot of people talking about the Australian physicality before the game, but you saw how physical they were in the first 10, 15 minutes and they carried it through the game.

“Certainly, the intensity and physicality is always up there with a team of the quality that the Wallabies have.”

O’Mahony rued vital moments when Ireland failed to strike from periods of sustained pressure and territory.

“The one that stood out for me is the pressure we put on them and we just had that release valve of a turnover or a missed breakdown and a missed turnover in the ruck,” he continued.

“And you see how dangerous they are on broken ball and how they can strike wide off turnover ball, and it’s difficult then when you’re chasing it like that.”

But they are reasons to optimistic about levelling the series next week?

“Of course there is, we’ll have a look and there are things for us to work on, but it’s not all just thrown out the window. We stick to our process, our plan.

“We’re hugely disappointed, but that’s the beauty of a three-match tour that you get back on the horse, whoever is selected, and get another shot. A chance to put it right.

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