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There is one great stat that highlights just how bleak last weekend was for Irish rugby

You have to go back a really, really long time to find a Pro12 weekend where all the Irish teams lost.

Aled Brew scores for Dragons in a win over Leinster in December 2009.
Aled Brew scores for Dragons in a win over Leinster in December 2009.
Image: Gareth Everett/Huw Evans Agency

IRELAND TRAVEL TO Wales this Saturday looking for their fourth win of the 2015 Six Nations and coincidentally, all four Irish teams were scheduled to play their Welsh counterparts away last weekend too.

As you probably know by now, it did not end well. All four Irish teams were beaten, with Leinster and Munster not even getting the consolation of a losing bonus point.

We crunched the numbers to bring you four stats that highlight just how bleak a three-day period last weekend was for the Irish teams (although the first one is really telling).

1,918 – The number of days it had been since all four Irish teams lost on one Pro12 weekend

So much time had passed since the Irish teams took such a complete hiding that the league wasn’t even called the Pro12 the last time they all lost. That December weekend of Magners League action saw Ulster lose at home to Glasgow, Munster lose to the Ospreys on the road, Leinster go down in Newport to the Dragons and Connacht lose to Cardiff away.

Strangely, the national team were on a great run then too, just like Joe Schmidt’s men are now. Declan Kidney’s side had won a Grand Slam that spring and had just completed an unbeaten autumn series, beating South Africa and drawing with Australia.

8 – The number of penalties conceded in the first half by Munster

Munster ended the first half at the Liberty Stadium 17-0 down on the scoreboard and 8-0 behind on the penalty count. That amount of indiscipline is staggering and some of the penalties conceded – notably Dave O’Callaghan’s high tackle and Duncan Williams blatantly coming in from the side to kick the ball out of the ruck – were completely headless.

17 – The amount of points Leinster were outscored by in the final hour on Saturday

When Jimmy Gopperth kicked a penalty to extend Leinster’s lead to 10-3 at Parc y Scarlets, things were looking good for the visitors. They seemed to have their zip back in their attacking play as Luke Fitzgerald and Fergus McFadden made nice gains.

teo

 

It looked like Ben Te’o lovely try would be the first of many but after Gopperth’s penalty the Scarlets outscored Leinster by three tries to zero and 20-3 overall to deny Matt O’Connor’s men even a losing bonus point.

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68 – The number of phases Cardiff went through in the build-up to their winning try

Pat Lam has explained in great detail how he felt Connacht were robbed last Friday but he should also look at his own team’s failings. The visitors made raids into the Cardiff 22 on multiple occasions in the first half and despite scoring one try, they left one or two behind them.

And while they obviously benefited from a referee’s decision, the home side showed great resilience and patience to work a winning score for Joaquin Tuculet.

cardiff

Some reports in Wales heralded the weekend as a psychological victory ahead of next Saturday but it is worth remembering that almost everyone who will take the field at the Millennium Stadium won’t have been involved in any of those four games.

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