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Schmidt hails Carbery's 'bravery' after steering Ireland to victory

The Munster out-half produced a moment of magic to help see off Scotland.

JOE SCHMIDT HAILED Joey Carbery for the way the Munster out-half bounced back from a shaky start in Edinburgh to guide Ireland to a 22-13 victory following the early loss of Johnny Sexton.

Carbery endured a difficult introduction at Murrayfield when his flat pass was picked off by Finn Russell, with the Scotland out-half streaking clear for Sam Johnson to cut Ireland’s lead.

Joey Carbery makes a break in the lead up to Keith Earls try Carbery produced a moment of magic for Ireland's third try. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

But the 23-year-old showed admirable resolve to recover from the early setback and produce a commanding performance in the pivot, the standout moment being his break and pass for Keith Earls’ try in the near corner.

Carbery grew in stature as the second half developed, kicking excellently for touch and producing a number of big moments in defence, which Schmidt was quick to reference in his post-match thoughts.

“There were bits of his game that he’ll look back at and he’ll be going ‘I can do this a little bit better, I can be a little bit more dominant here, I can give us a bit more direction here’, but I thought he made some super tackles, epitomised by his final tackle in the game where he gave us an opportunity to turn the ball over when we really wanted it back,” the Ireland head coach said.

“I thought he was brave and accurate and I think he’ll grow as a result of getting the opportunity.”

Overall, Schmidt was relieved his side were able to recover from last week’s defeat to England to get their Six Nations title defence up and running, but admits Ireland are still ‘lacking in tempo’.

“We just muscled our way through it,” he added.

It wasn’t the prettiest game, we got a peach of a set-piece try and we got a couple of broken field running tries. We restricted them to an intercept try, so from that perspective, it was a massive defensive effort.

“We weren’t spectacular and didn’t play particularly well. Our lineout and scrum, those set-pieces were fundamental for us.

We’re lacking a tempo in a game. We’re not quite hitting our rhythm, and our ball is being slowed. There’s a bit of anxiety [after last week] and we had to endure some tough moments, and I’m really proud of the way the players did.”

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Ryan Bailey

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