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Ireland players ratings: How Joe Schmidt's men fared in Six Nations defeat to Wales

Ireland's Rory Best leaves the field after his final Six Nations appearance.
Ireland's Rory Best leaves the field after his final Six Nations appearance.

Ireland could do nothing to stop Wales completing the Grand Slam on Saturday as they went down 25-7 in Joe Schmidt's final Six Nations game in charge.

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While the boss is hoping his Championship 'risks' can help deliver a top World Cup campaign, Saturday's performance was not one that will have pleased him.

So how did the individual players rate?

Starting XV

Rob Kearney 4: Late on the scene for Parkes’s pivotal early try and there wasn’t much more really until he ran a line which saw Sexton pass into touch.

Keith Earls 5: Was cynically tripped by Adams but beavered away with the thankless stuff he was asked to do when back-tracking. Not a day to be a winger. 

Gary Ringrose 4: Not a day to be an Irish midfielder. He needed the ball but cut a fairly isolated figure when it failed to arrive. Eclipsed by Jonathan Davies.  

Bundee Aki 4: Finished second best against fellow Kiwi Parkes and like Ringrose the Connacht man was a peripheral presence. Midfield was so poor. 

Jacob Stockdale 5: Felled by Parkes early on when bursting for the line, he was a spectator for large parts. There were knock-ons but also nearly scored near end.

Johnny Sexton 4: Oh dear. It all went wrong. Errors galore and then the red mist took over. This time his growing fury got the upper hand. Should have left earlier. 

Conor Murray 4: Watching Sexton go south couldn’t have been easy. He wasn’t much better himself on a day of slow ruck ball and much Welsh spoiling.

Cian Healy 4: An early knock-on set the tone. After that he seemed to fall foul of Angus Gardner’s whistle on far too many occasions.

Rory Best (capt) 4: Six Nations farewell will haunt him. The skipper brought little to the game and largely carries the can for the poor lineout. 

Tadhg Furlong 4: Worst game in an Ireland shirt. There was simply none of the power and aggression around the field. Sloppy and costly penalties conceded too.

James Ryan 6: Busy enough with his carrying and tackling, but it was all to no avail when all in green were eclipsed. Rarely, if ever, has he been so muted.

Tadhg Beirne 4: One trademark turnover in his Six Nations debut seemed promising enough. However, that was as good as it got for the former Scarlets player.  

Peter O’Mahony 4: As game-plan imploded he simply went missing in the carnage. A key leader and inspirational figure, he racked up for one turnover and that was it. 

Sean O’Brien 4: He looked a spent force even before becoming the first to be hauled off. Just about all his work was in defence which wasn’t why he was selected.  

CJ Stander 4: His failed tapped penalty summed up the day. Ireland’s top carrier on 14 but made little ground for it as Wales won the back row battle.


Jack Conan for O’Brien (51mins) 4: Got busy but for little gain

David Kilcoyne (for Healy 58mins) 4: Three carries for three metres. Says it all

Andrew Porter (for Furlong 58mins) 3: Gifted Wales a late penalty

Quinn Roux (for Beirne 58mins) 3: Two carries for zero metres

Niall Scannell (for Best 64mins) 4: Couldn’t do much in 16 minutes

Jordan Larmour (for Kearney 64mins) 4: At least stopped Ireland being nilled

Kieran Marmion (for Murray 70mins) 4: Brought some energy

Jack Carty (for Sexton 72mins) 4: Should have been on much earlier

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