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Australia won the battle of the body language - Ronan O'Gara

The RTÉ analyst had an interesting view on why Ireland lost this evening in Dublin.

ROG remains optimistic about Ireland's future.
ROG remains optimistic about Ireland's future.
Image: ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

FORMER IRELAND AND Munster out-half Ronan O’Gara says Ireland’s defeat to Australia this evening was partly due to a lack of aggression.

The Racing Metro coach was pitch-side for RTÉ to provide his expert opinion and highlighted the fact that the Wallabies had the greater energy levels, as well as a more confrontational approach.

“Australia were good, very good. I was impressed. I suppose it’s different for me, I played with all these guys. I know I’m finished now, but I’m shattered. I was at pitch level and I think they [Australia] won the body language battle. A lot stems from that.

“The little things about pushing fellas on the ground, getting up off the ground that split second faster [than your opponent], getting into the defensive line. Are you talking more aggressively than your opponent? Are you getting in a dirty little remark to him?

“The one thing that disappointed me was that when Kuridrani spear tackled O’Mahony, there was no reaction. In our time, and it’s not long ago, he would have got his head knocked off. That’s what you need.”

There is certainly a strong element of insight to O’Gara’s words and that aspect of Ireland’s attitude was a disappointment. Still, the Cork native says there is no need to panic yet; Ireland will bounce back.

image

ROG says players like Luke Marshall are still learning. ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan.

“It’s not all doom and gloom. That’s sport, it happens and I think we need to get behind the team now. Less than 80 minutes ago, we were probably gone the other way about the team, that they were a little bit better than they are.

“Today we got badly beaten by a good side, but I think it can be turned around. There are glimmers of hope there. We’re blooding a lot of new young players and some of these players are finding it difficult. You have to persevere with these guys, they’re the best we have at club level. The step up is difficult, but we’ll get there.”

The All Blacks await in what will be another stern test of Ireland’s creaking defence next weekend. O’Gara admits that it will be a demanding occasion, but he is optimistic for the future.

“I was delighted we finished strong and came back to play until the end. When the tide is against you, you want the final whistle but the lads hung in there and dug in for each other.

“Next week is going to be difficult, but I guarantee this can be turned around. ”

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Murray Kinsella

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