How the Ireland players rated during eight-try Six Nations success over Italy
Ireland enjoyed a comfortable 56-19 success over Italy at Aviva Stadium on Saturday, but how did the individuals perform?
Jonathan Bradley runs his eye over Ireland's stars:
Rob Kearney 7
Only man outside Sexton not to get in on the try scoring act, he can at least blame that on Romain Poite. Another solid showing from the full-back.
Keith Earls 9
Murray was handed the official man of the match but his Munster team-mate surely ran him close. Scored a try, saved another and looked sharp.
Robbie Henshaw 9
Caused Italy all sorts of problems with his running lines and scored two tries in just 45 minutes. His injury will be a huge concern.
Bundee Aki 7
Connacht man scored his first international try and had an interesting day. Should be no surprise that Schmidt highlighted what didn’t come off.
Jacob Stockdale 8
His kick-chase remains an unheralded part of his game but got in on the scoring act too after the bonus point was secure with powerful running.
Johnny Sexton 8
This time was able to watch the last half hour with the job done. Pulled the strings well when Ireland stayed patient.
Conor Murray 9
Scampered home untouched for his try in the first half and conducted Ireland precisely throughout.
Jack McGrath 8
Put in a big shift throughout a lengthy outing. His tackles especially stood out in the loose as he vies with Cian Healy.
Rory Best 7
Ireland’s line-out is a key facet of their game and the skipper was bang on from 15 darts. Got his own reward with one maul try.
Tadhg Furlong 6
Injury doesn’t seem severe which will be a huge relief. Managed only three minutes of the contest here before being replaced by Andrew Porter.
Iain Henderson 7
Wrapped in cotton wool for bigger battles ahead after just 40 minutes. Carried well and did some good work at ruck.
Devin Toner 7
Ireland’s safety blanket in the line-out took more than half of their throws on the set-piece. A few handling errors offset his performance there.
Peter O'Mahony 8
This was another tenacious effort from O’Mahony. Big at the breakdown, tackled well, and popped up in attack too.
Dan Leavy 7
Acting more as a traditional seven, wasn’t as impactful as a week ago but didn’t need to be. One big turnover created a try.
Jack Conan 7
Having been handed his chance with CJ Stander, will be frustrated perhaps by untimely shoulder knock that saw him taken off as a precaution.
Andrew Porter (for Furlong, 3) 8: Huge shift when called upon early.
Quinn Roux (for Henderson, 40) 7: Provided no small amount of grunt.
CJ Stander (for Conan, 40) 7: Brought his usual go-forward ball.
Jordan Larmour (for Henshaw, 45) 6: Some sensational footwork.
Kieran Marmion (for Murray, 50) 6: Couldn’t stop game getting loose.
Joey Carberry (for Sexton, 50) 6: Not high pressure but nailed some tough kicks.
Sean Cronin (for Best, 60) 5: Made a few carries.
Cian Healy (for McGrath, 68) 5: Not given much time.
Belfast Telegraph Digital