Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 25 May 2016

Home Sport Rugby Six Nations

RBS 6 Nations: Tougher tests still to come, warns Dan Tuohy

By Nick Purewal

Published 04/02/2014

Dan Tuohy is expecting a tougher test against Wales
Dan Tuohy is expecting a tougher test against Wales

A Wales side brimming with Lions talent will be Ireland's RBS 6 Nations acid test, according to lock Dan Tuohy.

The Ulster second row believes there will be "bigger steps" than Scotland, whom Ireland swatted aside 28-6 in Dublin on Sunday.

Tuohy admitted Ireland must heed the cautionary tale of last season's abortive Six Nations and has warned his team-mates to fight off another false dawn.

Ireland triumphed 30-22 in Cardiff in their opening Six Nations clash last season, but then slumped to four consecutive defeats.

That capitulation cost Declan Kidney his job and Tuohy admits Ireland must steel themselves to double their championship win tally at the first opportunity this weekend.

"That would set us up nicely for the triple crown away to England!" Tuohy joked.

"But Wales at home, England away, France away; we saw France-England and it was unbelievable.

"There are a few tough ones coming up, but we feel these are teams we can mix with, so we're looking forward to it.

"Wales will be a different kettle of fish, they've had a bit of a 'feeler' game against Italy.

"We won the first game last year and we all know how that ended up, so it's important for us to back up the first week and become a consistent international team, that's what we've talked about.

"The six-day turnaround isn't ideal, but we just have to get on with it and roll our sleeves up.

"Wales are going for the hat-trick, they've got Lions all over the park, so it will be notched up another level."

Tuohy slotted in for captain Paul O'Connell at the last minute on Sunday, the Munster talisman laid low by a chest infection on Saturday night.

Ireland boss Joe Schmidt is confident O'Connell will be fit for Wales' visit to Dublin.

In-form Tuohy has helped Ulster register their first 100 per cent record in a Heineken Cup pool stage this season.

With Leinster and Munster's decorated European past to boot, Tuohy admitted Ireland have shared fans' frustration in the ability to transfer club success to the international arena.

In contrast Wales duty tends to bring the best out in their top stars and Tuohy challenged Ireland to follow their lead.

"I still think there are bigger steps to come (than Scotland)," he said.

"I think it's always been frustrating from a fans' point of view that the provincial sides are doing so well, but then we've struggled to get consistency with Ireland.

"People were wondering why if it goes so well with the provinces why can't they do it for Ireland.

"That's something we're extremely mindful of and to be a consistent team is tough, but the more time you spend together you get to know each other a little bit better."

Tuohy is wary of the threat posed by Warren Gatland's Wales team, adding: "As soon as they put that red jersey on they turn into a different beast. They really do lift the intensity when they're playing for Wales.

"They are lit up with Lions, coming off a great tour, they'll be high on confidence, but it's important for us to stick to what we know and what we know works for us."

How to Complain

If you have a complaint about the editorial content of the Belfast Telegraph or Sunday Life then contact the Editor here. If you are not satisfied with the response provided then you can contact the Independent Press Standards Organisation here

From the web

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting?

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph