Tipuric keen to reignite back row partnership

Date published: February 5 2016

Wales flanker Justin Tipuric is keen to reignite his back-row partnership with Sam Warburton when they face Ireland in Dublin on Sunday.

The duo will start a Six Nations match for the first time since Wales thumped England 30-3 to clinch the 2013 championship. 

They will line-up on either side of the Wales pack again as Warren Gatland's side go in search of a perfect start to the Six Nations against the defending champions.

The all British and Irish Lions back-row of captain Warburton, Tipuric and number eight Taulupe Faletau will pack down against the Ireland trio of CJ Stander, Tommy O'Donnell and Jamie Heaslip.

And Tipuric is hoping a harmonious performance can help claim victory in Dublin.

"Sam's a quality player and when you play with any player with that quality, you know what type of game they have so you just have to support them," he told the Welsh Rugby Union's official website

"We just have to make sure we work well as a back-row and a pack. We know each other's games a lot more now after five years together in the Wales squad. The more time you spend with someone, the more you get to know their game."

Wales enjoyed success on their last visit to the Irish capital, running out 16-10 winners in a Rugby World Cup warm-up match last August. But after a 2014 Six Nations defeat, Tipuric knows the test that awaits.

"It was a good performance by the boys and it was nice to be a part of that team," he added.

"We came away with a good win, it's a hard place to go and play and we learnt that in 2014 when they put us to the sword. We have to make sure that we put a good performance in. 

"Ireland have a big, physical pack and they like to keep it tight and use their kicking game a lot."

Asked whether the weather would be a factor this weekend, Tipuric said: "It's more about the opposition and what type of game plan they use, they kick the ball a lot, keep it tight and go up the middle. 

"It's going to be a physical game no matter what, and whether it's wet or dry, Ireland like to keep the same gameplan."