Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Rugby World Cup

Ireland player ratings: Jordan Larmour leads the way in big World Cup win over Samoa

Ireland's full back Jordan Larmour was the star man against Samoa.
Ireland's full back Jordan Larmour was the star man against Samoa.

Ireland cruised into the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup with a big win over Samoa on Saturday.

Rugby round up Newsletter

Game previews, plus expert insights and exclusive commentary from the Belfast Telegraph sports team.

But how did the individual players perform?

Starting XV

15. JORDAN LARMOUR: Schmidt's trust is intact. The outside break and one-handed offload made a try for Sexton and Murray's razor-sharp pass made one for the full-back. Always looked dangerous one-on-one, beating an incredible twelve defenders – 8.  

14. KEITH EARLS: The fetch of one of Murray's high balls was a first-half highlight against a rash pass that caused a turnover from the centre position. Those fizzing feet were a factor, just not often enough – 6.

13. ROBBIE HENSHAW: At last, the missing piece in the midfield was restored. It didn't go as well as expected. The rusty lines of running and mediocre handling were a real disappointment. Improved as the game wore on. Lasted 62 minutes – 5.

12. BUNDEE AKI: The physicality which is the trademark of his game worked against the centre. The red card for the high hit on Seuteni was correct by the letter of the law - 4.

11. JACOB STOCKDALE: It was one of those games for the left wing. The ball just didn't come his way with any discernible room for manoeuvre, acting as a decoy for Sexton's second try, doing his best work in defence – 5.

Sign In

10. JONATHAN SEXTON: The theory that Ireland are a different proposition with their general on the battlefield was confirmed. The two tries and confident kicking were what the situation needed. Played just 50 minutes - 8.

9. CONOR MURRAY: There was on temptation to force the game, the scrum-half sniping just once. He lofted balls for others to contest and posted a sizzling pass across three Samoans for Larmour's try – 6.

1. CIAN HEALY: The loose-head averaged out at one metre-per-carry for his nine attempts to pierce the gain line. These days, those explosive carries through bodies are not as regular as they once were - 6.

2. RORY BEST: The captain's fitness is never in doubt, often leading the charge from restarts and chasing lost causes. The lineout was a strength against limited set-piece opposition. Replaced on 50 minutes - 7.

3. TADHG FURLONG: The tight-head could have had a hat-trick, making the line three times, returning one try together with a number of big moments. The scrum never moved an inch. Replaced on 44 minutes - 8.

4. IAIN HENDERSON: The lineout caller concentrated on the mundane work of nailing down the basics, even passing the ball five times from 13 touches. There has to be a big game in the lock – 5.

5. JAMES RYAN: Ireland's 80-minute man played just 56. The tackle and carry statistics were not up to his gold standard. He took a more central role at the lineout, stealing a beauty in defence - 6.  

6. TADHG BEIRNE: The flanker made a case to unseat Peter O'Mahony for his heavy workload. There were 15 carries, good hands at the lineout and an offload which stuck in just under an hour - 8.

7. JOSH VAN DER FLIER: The natural openside is most effective without the ball, hammering in the line speed for a team-leading 10 tackles. The ability to nab carriers behind the gain line can be a source of momentum – 7.

8. CJ STANDER: The number eight's life would be made far easier by working some footwork into his game. Despite being ferociously double-tackled, he crunched out 29 metres from 22 carries in a gruelling shift – 7.


The front row of ANDREW PORTER (44 mins), NIALL SCANNELL (50) and DAVE KILCOYNE (56) added real impetus at the scrum; JEAN KLEYN (56) looked after the ruck and the set-piece; PETER O'MAHONY (59) took over at the lineout and poached a penalty; In the backs, JOEY CARBERY (50) looked at ease; LUKE McGRATH (52) stuck to the basics; ANDREW CONWAY (61) took his chance for the sixth try.

COACH JOE SCHMIDT: Ireland rarely looked in difficulty from a basic game plan that was just too structured, organised, efficient and disciplined, despite Aki's red card, in moving through to the quarter-final - 7.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph