Planet Rugby

Ireland cruise past Samoa

09th November 2013 19:59

Share:

BOD Ire v Sam 2013

Class act: Brian O'Driscoll

New Ireland boss Joe Schmidt's tenure got off to a fine start when his side secured a 40-9 win over Samoa in Dublin on Saturday.

The appointment of Schmidt at the helm of Irish rugby has yielded an abundance of expectation and this dominant victory justified the sense of growing optimism among those on the Emerald Isle.

After a subdued and stuttering first period, which saw both sides make an abundance of unforced errors, Ireland exposed the gaping holes in the visitors' depleted defence to score three tries including two for debutant Dave Kearney.

In truth, it was a lot more straightforward than many of the 45,000 in attendance would have predicted. The visitors didn't provide the level of opposition and resistance which their pre-match tag of potential giant killers or indeed current seventh placed ranking had indicated.

Nonetheless, with sterner tests on the horizon in the shape of Australia and New Zealand, this was an adequate start to an new era and in the process, laid a solid foundation for what is to come.

In the absence of Jonny Sexton, Ulster's Paddy Jackson added further weight to his case for the number ten jersey for next week's visit of the Wallabies with a composed display behind the scrum as he finished with fifteen points to his name including three first-half penalties.

However, his performance is unlikely to wrestle the starting berth off the Racing Metro fly-half while it was memorable evening for prop Jack McGrath who marked his international bow with a man-of-the-match performance in the scrum. Having said that, his task was made slightly easier with Leicester Tiger Logovi'i Mulipola forced off through injury in the opening minutes.

Peter Mahony set the ball rolling after a largely lethargic opening half hour when he rounded off a fine rolling maul to cross the line before the introduction of Sean O'Brien, for the injured Chris Henry, provided the sparks the hosts and those in the stands required.

However, the game's defining moment came on the stroke of half-time as referee Steve Walsh decided to justifiably sin-bin George Pisi after using the TMO to determine the centre had committed and dangerous and unnecessary tip-tackle on Tommy Bowe.

Ireland took full advantage of their numerical advantage as they scored ten points during Pisi's absence to all but end Samoa's brave effort with O'Brien crossing the line after another piece of individual brilliance from the evergreen Brian O'Driscoll. A nasty collision between Brando Vaaulu and Tusi Pisi before the hour mark was an additional blow to Stephen Betham's already depleted ranks.

With one eye on the forthcoming fixtures, Schimdt utilised his bench and underlined the strength in depth he has at his disposal with the introduction of British and Irish Lions duo Cian Healy and newly appointed captain Paul O'Connell.

Kearney was one of those replacements and wasted no time in making an impact in a green shirt. The winger, younger brother of Rob, ducked into the corner in incisive fashion before Fergus McFadden scored his eighth international try in the opposite corner after aesthetically pleasing approach play.

There was enough time left for Kearney to score his second and Ireland's fifth to seal a comfortable win.

Victory ensures Ireland will leapfrog their opponents into seventh in the IRB rankings thanks to their third successive victory, the first time that's been achieved since October 2011. However, all eyes will be on the task in hand when they welcome Australia and then the All Blacks to Dublin.

The next couple of weeks will give a clear indication if Ireland can become the driving force they're capable of becoming under Schmidt.

The scorers:

For Ireland:
Tries: O'Mahony, O'Brien, D Kearney 2, McFadden
Con: Jackson 3
Pen: Jackson 3

For Samoa:
Pens: T Pisi 2, Fotuali'i

Ireland: 15 Rob Kearney, 14 Tommy Bowe, 13 Brian O'Driscoll, 12 Gordon D'Arcy, 11 Fergus McFadden, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Conor Murray, 8 Jamie Heaslip (c), 7 Chris Henry, 6 Peter O'Mahony, 5 Devin Toner, 4 Mike McCarthy, 3 Mike Ross, 2 Rory Best, 1 Jack McGrath.
Replacements: 16 Sean Cronin, 17 Cian Healy, 18 Declan Fitzpatrick, 19 Paul O'Connell, 20 Sean O'Brien, 21 Eoin Reddan, 22 Ian Madigan, 23 Dave Kearney.

Samoa: 15 Faatoina Autagavaia, 14 Alapati Leuia, 13 George Pisi, 12 Johnny Leota, 11 Brando Vaaulu, 10 Tusi Pisi, 9 Kahn Fotuali'i, 8 Taiasina Tuifua, 7 Jack Lam, 6 Ofisa Treviranus, 5 Teofilo Paulo, 4 Faatiga Lemalu, 3 Logovi'i Mulipola, 2 Ole Avei, 1 Sakaria Taulafo.
Replacements: 16 Ti'i Paulo, 17 Viliamu Afatia, 18 James Johnston, 19 Joe Tekori, 20 Alafoti Faosilivia, 21 Jeremy Sua, 22 Isaia Tuifua, 23 Fautua Otto.

Referee: Steve Walsh (Australia)

By Ryan Bailey at the Aviva Stadium
@RyanBailey37

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 26
London Welsh vs Gloucester19:45
Saturday , September 27
Saracens vs Sale15:00
Leicester vs London Irish15:00
Northampton vs Bath15:15
Sunday , September 28
Exeter vs Harlequins14:00
Wasps vs Newcastle14:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , September 27
South Africa vs Australia16:05
Argentina vs New Zealand23:10
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , September 26
Edinburgh vs Scarlets19:35
Leinster vs Cardiff Blues19:35
Glasgow vs Connacht19:35
Saturday , September 27
Zebre vs Ulster15:00
Munster vs Ospreys18:30
Sunday , September 28
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Benetton Treviso16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , September 27
Toulon vs Montpellier18:00
Stade Francais vs La Rochelle18:00
Bayonne vs Toulouse18:00
Brive vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Oyonnax vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
Lyon vs Castres18:00
Grenoble vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , September 26
Cheetahs vs Blue Bulls19:10
Pumas vs Western Province19:00
Saturday , September 27
Sharks vs Eastern Province Kings14:00
Griquas vs Lions15:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 21
Newcastle 10 - 35 NorthamptonNewcastle vs Northampton Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Ospreys 62 - 13 EdinburghOspreys vs Edinburgh Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
ITM Cup
Otago 38 - 7 WaikatoOtago vs Waikato Report
Wellington 20 - 42 TasmanWellington vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 20
Sale 46 - 8 London WelshSale vs London Welsh Report
Harlequins 26 - 23 WaspsHarlequins vs Wasps Report
London Irish 32 - 36 SaracensLondon Irish vs Saracens Report
Bath 45 - 0 LeicesterBath vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Newport Gwent D'gons 13 - 33 GlasgowNewport Gwent D
Scarlets 43 - 0 Benetton TrevisoScarlets vs Benetton Treviso Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Racing Metro Paris 27 - 16 ToulouseRacing Metro Paris vs Toulouse Report
Grenoble 24 - 15 Bayonne
Montpellier 23 - 3 Stade FrancaisMontpellier vs Stade Francais Report
La Rochelle 26 - 29 Bordeaux-Begles
Clermont Auvergne 43 - 12 LyonClermont Auvergne vs Lyon Report
Castres 27 - 18 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Western Province 36 - 12 GriquasWestern Province vs Griquas Report
Blue Bulls 15 - 26 SharksBlue Bulls vs Sharks Report
Eastern Province Kings 22 - 37 CheetahsEastern Province Kings vs Cheetahs Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Hawkes Bay 36 - 17 Bay Of Plenty
Manawatu 36 - 17 Southland
Auckland 32 - 7 North HarbourAuckland vs North Harbour Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 19
Gloucester 22 - 25 ExeterGloucester vs Exeter Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Munster 31 - 5 ZebreMunster vs Zebre Report
Cardiff Blues 9 - 26 UlsterCardiff Blues vs Ulster Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath314
2Saracens313
3Northampton311
4Exeter310
5Leicester Tigers39