Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Rugby Six Nations

How the Ireland players rated during eight-try Six Nations success over Italy

Ireland's Jacob Stockdale (centre right) celebrates with team-mates after scoring his side's seventh try.
Ireland's Jacob Stockdale (centre right) celebrates with team-mates after scoring his side's seventh try.

Ratings by Jonathan Bradley

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.

Home comforts: Ireland’s Robbie Henshaw is tackled by Italy’s Marcello Violi

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.

RUGBYU Ir (37).jpg
Ireland's Conor Murray dives in to score his sides second try during the NatWest 6 Nations match at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday February 10, 2018. See PA story RUGBYU Ireland. Photo credit should read: Brian Lawless/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS APPLY: Editorial use only. No commercial or promotional use without prior consent from IRFU. No alterations or doctoring.

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.

RUGBYU Ir (41).jpg
Ireland's Tadhg Furlong leaves the field with an injury just three minutes into the contest.

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


From Belfast Telegraph