Belfast Telegraph

Friday 25 July 2014

Harinordoquy out to impress

Imanol Harinordoquy (left)

France back row Imanol Harinordoquy has warned Ireland he is determined to atone for his own shortcomings against Scotland.

Harinordoquy believes he fell well below his best in last weekend's 23-17 RBS 6 Nations victory at Murrayfield.

The Biarritz number eight, one of France's star performers during their march to last autumn's World Cup final, said: "I can and almost certainly must play better."

He added: "In the first half in particular I had the impression that I spent most of the time defending. With regard to defending I was active whereas in offence I was too passive. In the second half it was a little better."

France misfired at the line-out against Scotland, and Harinordoquy has pointed the finger of blame at himself.

The line-out is an area of Irish strength and Les Bleus, who have dispatched Italy and Scotland so far in this Six Nations, can ill-afford another bad day at the office.

"I take responsibility for that because I was captain of the line-out," he said.

"I was too focused on the patterns and calls we had made during the week leading up to the match.

"I was unable to adapt when they played a different pattern at some line-outs. We came under a lot of pressure in this area.

"We had already done a lot of work on their line-out habits in the lead-up to the original game before it was postponed. But perhaps it is best to leave it more to intuition on the day."

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