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We're moving on from our historic triumph: Easterby

By Jonathan Bradley

Ireland forwards coach Simon Easterby has stressed there will be no change in the side's approach to facing Canada on Saturday after last week's most famous of victories against New Zealand.

The men in green had waited 111 years for their first triumph over the sport's most dominant side, with head coach Joe Schmidt even joking that he regretted earlier telling the players he didn't care what happened for the rest of November if they won in Chicago against his homeland.

With a clean bill of health - Jordi Murphy aside - reported before training yesterday, and a changed line-up expected when the team is confirmed tomorrow, Easterby said the squad's mindset has not been altered by the win over the World champions.

"I don't think players lack self-belief," he said. "They're the furthest thing from arrogant but it's a positive thing that they feel comfortable in their own skin and what they can achieve as individuals and a group.

"I think that the mark of this squad is that we have to park up what we did on Saturday. Those players that had the opportunity - and to a man they were outstanding - they know that's sort of banked and they have to move on. Those players coming in and who get the opportunity to start this weekend have got to draw a line in the sand and start again."

From being considerable underdogs last weekend, Ireland's position is flipped on Saturday and they enter the game with Canada as overwhelming favourites.

They have never been beaten by the Canucks, including a 50-7 win in the World Cup just over a year ago. Easterby says Ireland must still produce a strong performance against the side now led by former Ulster coach Mark Anscombe.

"They've got some real quality individuals. If we allow them to play a bit then they will take advantage of a couple of their plays in particular," he added.

"Taylor Paris and DTH van der Merwe are both playing at the top end of the European game and their forward pack is effective as well, as we saw in the World Cup.

"We're fully aware that if we don't get our own house in order and make sure that we're fully nailed on that they'll cause us real problems."

Belfast Telegraph


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