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Six Nations: How Ireland rated against the Scots

It was another eventful evening at Lansdowne Road as Declan Kidney’s men took on the Scots. Here’s how we think they went.

Ireland's Gordon D'Arcy and Eoin Reddan tackle Max Evans of Scotland.
Ireland's Gordon D'Arcy and Eoin Reddan tackle Max Evans of Scotland.
Image: INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Rob Kearney – 8

While not reaching the stellar heights of last week in Paris, Kearney was Ireland’s driving force and kicked well from the hand to pin the Scots back.

Tommy Bowe – 6

Denied a try in the second-half when he couldn’t squirm quickly enough to get a try awarded. Not as much attacking ball but did well in the build up to Trimble’s try.

Keith Earls – 7

A great kick, chase and thumping tackle in the first half and showed superb pace in a second-half break that forced Scotland back onto their tryline. Illegally denied a try when Evans pulled him back late on.

Gordon D’Arcy -6

Was solid in defence apart from a moment early in the second-half when Gray ran over him. Fumbled knock-on under no pressure and substituted with a third of the game remaining.

Andrew Trimble – 7

Showed great strength to crash over for his try in the first half. Was fortunate to escape with a sore jaw after clashing heads with Scotland’s Lee Jones.

Jonathan Sexton – 7

Place kicking was excellent, apart from a missed conversion on the right touchline. Showed quick thinking to kick cross-field for Bowe’s near miss and worked well with Reddan.

Eoin Reddan – 8

The best and worst of Reddan demonstrated in three first-half minutes. Spun on the reverse to snipe through and score Ireland’s second try but was exposed in defence for Gray’s try.

Cian Healy – 7

Ireland dominated the scrums, especially as the game wore on and Healy will take a lot of heart from a solid 80 minute shifts. Did conceded a couple of needless penalties.

Rory Best (capt) – 7

Eventually found his throwing radar and proved his try-scoring credentials again to put Ireland into a first half lead. Appeared in the backline and made yards before being replaced by Cronin.

Mike Ross – 8

Ross had the better of Allan Jacobsen all day and won his team at least four penalties. Was used as a decoy runner but showed great lungs and was only replaced late on.

Donncha O’Callaghan – 6

O’Callaghan is becoming the master of doing enough for his team but was at the periphery of most of Ireland’s most eye-catching plays. Was lucky not to be yellow carded late in the first half.

Donnacha Ryan – 7

Was named the official man of the match but was guilty of knocking the ball on twice to scupper dangerous attacking positions. Was a willing ball carrier and excellent in the line-out.

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Stephen Ferris – 8

The Ulster flanker’s outstanding (Wales yellow card aside) Six Nations continues and one shunting challenge on Denton in the second half epitomised his game.

Peter O’Mahony – 7

The rare sight of a green No. 7 making upfield breaks as O’Mahony enjoyed his full debut. Set Best up for his try and scrapped for his team at the bottom of countless rucks.

Jamie Heaslip – 6

A couple of serious drives up the centre put Ireland on the front foot but he was overshadowed by his back-row colleagues. Useful takes at the back of the line-out.

Replacements:

Sean Cronin – 6

Some strong drives made up for a spurned line-out soon after he came on.

Tom Court – 7

Combined well with Ross as a blood replacement for Healy and replaced Ross late on.

Mike McCarthy -6

Had three minutes to make an impact and barrelled into two late rucks.

Shane Jennings – 6

A handy replacement No. 7 and took up some line direction and on-field calls when he came on.

Tomás O’Leary – 7

Came close with a diving effort under the posts and will be happy with his outing.

Ronan O’Gara – 6

Took over the on-field responsibilities as captain and combined well with Earls in the centre.

Fergus McFadden

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