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Dublin: 12 °C Tuesday 21 May, 2019


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Hello, and welcome to our live coverage of Ireland’s first International Rules test against Australia.

Here is the squad that Anthony Tohill has selected for the games:

Ireland: S Cluxton (Dublin), E Cadogan (Cork), F Hanley (Galway),N McGee (Donegal), J McMahon (Tyrone), K Reilly (Meath), E Bolton (Kildare), C McKeever (Armagh), K McKernan (Down), C Begley (Laois), B Murphy (Carlow), A Walsh (Cork), D Hughes (Monaghan), E Callaghan (Kildare), L Glynn (Wicklow), T Kennelly (Sydney Swans & Kerry), P Kelly (Cork), Z Tuohy (Carlton & Laois), P Hanley (Brisbane Lions & Mayo), S McDonnell (Armagh), K Donaghy (Kerry), M Murphy (Donegal), T Walsh (Sydney Swans & Kerry).

The Ireland team had their last training session ahead of the game yesterday. You can check out the photos here.

Just a reminder for any International Rules novices, it’s 6 points for a goal, 3 points if you get it between the large posts and 1 point if you hit it between the large post and the small post.

The Australian media seem quite bemused by the fact that Cluxton refuses to speak to the media. They’re not the only ones.

We’re underway here…

Ireland 3-0 Australia: Tommy Walsh has registered the first score of the game with a beautifully struck effort between the large posts.

Ireland 6-0 Australia: Leighton Glynn has now increased Ireland’s lead. It’s been a fine start for the boys in Green.

Apologies, amid the rush I never got the chance to mention the Ireland team. Here it is:

Cluxton, McKeever, F Hanley, McGee, McKernan, P Hanley, Begley, Tuohy, P Kelly, Glynn, T Walsh, J McMahon, M Murphy, Donaghy, McDonnell

Ireland 12-1 Australia: Murphy gets an easy free for Ireland, but Australia respond immediately with a solitary point. Tadhg Kennelly then increases their advantage, slotting over beautifully between the large posts.

13-1: Hanley increases Ireland’s lead by an extra point. And it’s Hanley who scores the free this time.


Phew! That was intense. The first-quarter has now ended. The perfect performance from Ireland arguably.

41-20 to Ireland: Tommy Walsh increases Ireland’s lead. But Mitch Robinson responds immediately for Australia. Ireland are still threatening to run away with this game. Stephen Cluxton is then caught out of his goal and the Australian simply taps it into the empty net.

HALF TIME: Ireland lead 44-20, with McDonnell grabbing another three-pointer just before the end of the half.

It’s half-time and Ireland have a substantial lead. It’s been a disappointing performance from the Australians. The game has also been largely violence-free thankfully. Despite the occasional rough tackle, Anthony Tohill has not been let down by his team.

47-21: The second half is now underway and predictably, Ireland have added to their lead already.

50-22: Australia respond courtesy of a Brad Green free, between the posts, but Tommy Walsh – who has arguably been the standout player so far – adds to Australia’s misery with a beautifully-taken three-pointer.

50-23: Brad Green will be disappointed with that free, as he has make do with only one point when three looked on.

Donaghy has been posing the Australians some problems, as he has done in the past, with Ireland launching it up to the big man at every available opportunity.

It’s all kicking off now with players squaring up to each other left, right and centre. Not sure how that started, but one of the Irish players appeared to say something that provoked the Australians.

Meanwhile, Emmet Bolton has been taken off on a stretcher, after he received a nasty injury following what was an innocuous challenge from his opponent.

53-23: Donaghy scores a simple free straight in front of the posts.

56-23: Leighton Glynn has scored another excellent free from a tricky angle.

59-23: McKernan, with a powerful strike from far out, adds to Australia’s woes.

59-26: Brad Green responds for Australia with a straightforward free, just before the third quarter ends.

It has been a very disappointing performance from Australia. Some of their players only look half-interested. Their apathy has also been reflected by the small attendance and low-key build up to the game. Their attitude may well lead to even more question marks over thee series’ future.

Right, the fourth quarter has just commenced, although this game is surely beyond Australia’s grasp by now.

Leighton Glynn scores a stunning effort into the top corner from around 20 yards out. That’s put the game beyond all doubt.

ANOTHER GOAL: This is getting embarrassing for the Australians, as McDonnell scores from close range to make it 74-29.

A fair few Olé Olés can be heard around the stadium at the moment. You’d almost swear Ireland were  the home team judging by both the crowd and their performance.

Australia have now responded with a single consolation point.

Wonderful catch by McDonnell. His subsequent free sails over. The Armagh man has been magnificent throughout this game.

There are seconds remaining as Brad Green gets Australia another three points from a free in front of the posts.


That was a rout. It will go down as one of the most one-sided games in the International Rules’ history.

There will inevitably be question marks raised over the future of the series, due mainly, it has to be said, to the Australians’ disinterested approach and pallid performance.

The next game between the two will take place at the same time next Friday, but it will take a miracle for Australia to recover the series now.

Here’s a quick poll before we go. Who was your man of the match?

Poll Results:

Walsh (42)
McDonnell (27)
Murphy (25)
Donaghy (14)
Tuohy (10)
Other (8)

Right, that’s it from me. Irrespective of the Australians level of performance, an Irish victory is an Irish victory, I suppose. Still, never has the phrase ‘men against boys’ seemed so apt, given the youthfulness of most of the Australian team.

Anyway, thanks for reading, and for your comments. And don’t forget to check out our various Premier League liveblogs over the weekend. Ciao!

About the author:

Paul Fennessy