Ireland player ratings: Caelan Doris shines in dominant Six Nations win over Wales

Jared Wright
Ireland player ratings v Wales with Caelan doris shining in the victory in cardiff

Following a 34-10 victory over Wales, their first in Cardiff since 2013, here are the player ratings for Andy Farrell’s Ireland team.

15 Hugo Keenan: A trademark performance from the full-back. Safe under the high ball, cleaned up a few dangerous threats, including the kick through from Rio Dyer and played his part in James Lowe’s try, calling the winger over on defence before his intercept. Outstanding game, and a worthy man of the match. 8

14 Mack Hansen: The flyer didn’t get too many chances with the ball in hand out wide, but he went looking for work in the midfield, popping up for four passes and two offloads. He chased the kicks well and made some good reads on defence. 7

Central to the win

13 Garry RingroseA tremendous tackle on Dan Biggar typified his game as he quickly recovered from a stumble. He shut out Wales‘ attack sublimely all game and landed that massive hit on Biggar in the second half. 8

12 Stuart McCloskey: A tidy shift from the centre who regularly got his side on the front foot with strong ball carries, winning the hard yards and beating defenders easily. He was sound defensively and won a turnover. 7

11 James Lowe: Perfectly picked off Biggar’s pass, taking the risk with Liam Williams out wide, but it paid off and denied Wales again soon after. Made the most metres in the match, had a few good defensive plays and was one of Ireland’s best-attacking weapons. 8

10 Johnny Sexton: Marshalled the attack wonderfully, managing his runners and picking out the correct options just about every time. He was wasteful with his kick to Peter O’Mahony, but overall, he was excellent. 8

9 Conor Murray: Went someway in silencing the concerns around his ability to stick with Ireland’s high tempo, but Murray was excellent. His service was swift, and kicking was sharp. He had the one standout error, where he kicked five seconds early before half-time. 7

Brutal efficiency

8 Caelan Doris: Dominant Doris’ performance, the number eight got his side off to a flyer rounding off the first try with a strong carry from close range. He continued in that fashion throughout the match and was just as brilliant without the ball. Top tackler in the match and joint-top carrier in the Irish pack. 9

7 Josh van der Flier: Ireland’s back-row was on top form, and he was central to that. He tackled, carried and competed at the breakdown well for a full 80 minutes and was rewarded with a try before the final whistle. 8

6 Peter O’Mahony: Superb in the lineout and handled the ball well. He carried well in traffic and was a pest at the breakdown. Solid shift. 6

5 James Ryan: Abrasive ball carries throughout; he powered just short of the line for the first try and went on to score the second. He also contested Wales’ lineout well, winning a crucial steal after the hour mark. 8

4 Tadhg Beirne: Solid lineout option and produced a typically busy performance in all facets of the game. He made good metres from his carries and all his tackles. Solid without being outstanding. 6

Solid scrum

3 Finlay Bealham: He fought well in a tight scrum battle with Gareth Thomas and just got the upper hand. Busy defensively and his carries and hands were excellent. 7

2 Dan Sheehan: Simply stupendous with the ball in hand, shoving tacklers backwards with his leg drive. He was brilliant at the breakdown too, and Ireland‘s lineout went off without a hitch with him throwing in. 8

1 Andrew Porter: Sensational strength to stop Jac Morgan from scoring before half-time; he did concede a scrum penalty in the first half but had the upper hand more often than not. Guilty of a few silly penalties, including the one after Williams’ try. Overall the positives far outweighed the negatives in a big 76-minute shift. 7

Replacements: Wales improved as the went on, and Ireland seemingly let the foot off the throat. Craig Casey add some zip to the attack, while Bundee Aki added grunt. As a whole, the impact from the bench can undoubtedly improve. 5

READ MORE: Six Nations: Dominant Ireland begin with bonus-point triumph over wasteful Wales