KIERAN SHANNON: Stuttering start but 2019 can still be golden year for Ireland

It would be fair to say that as anti-climatic and disappointing as last Saturday in the Aviva was, it hardly constituted the sort of crisis and crossroads Irish rugby was looking at the last time we played and lost an opening Six Nations game to England, writes Kieran Shannon.

In fact it was so long ago since Ireland were previously paired against their oldest enemy in the first round of the competition, the tournament was in its first year being known as the Six Nations.

The same day Italy debuted in the top tier of European rugby with a magnificent 34-20 home win over Scotland, Ireland and head coach Warren Gatland suffered a far greater humiliation than the Scots did in Rome, as Clive Woodward’s England ran in six tries against them in a 50-18 pummelling.

Sign in or register for FREE to continue enjoying and to comment on our great range of opinion writers

Not a member yet? Register here

More on this topic

Ben Youngs believes Jonny May is the ‘deadliest’ winger in world rugby

McBryde points to Gravell play as inspiration for Six Nations victory

Tommy Seymour believes Scotland can cope without attacking flair of Finn Russell

Iain Henderson free to play against Italy following disciplinary hearing

More in this Section

Itoje to miss England’s Six Nations clash with Wales

Wales hope Halfpenny and Biggar will be fit to face England

Aaron Gillane to miss Limerick's clash with Cork over Fitzgibbon Cup

Sean O'Brien not giving up on Ireland after London switch

More by this author

Return to ‘Corkness’ more about attitude than tactics

John Morrison: The genial genius who was great for making them feel great

The Kieran Shannon Interview: Denis Leamy - 'The emotional stuff has petered out because we don’t need it anymore’

GAA has programme the wrong way around


 

Join the conversation - comment here

House rules for comments - FAQ

 

Lifestyle

Speaking up for new ways to learn the Irish language

Slave to the Algorithm? What it's really like to be a Deliveroo rider

Ros na Rún actor's book tells tales of a Navan brothel

GameTech: Apex at the very top of Battle Royale games

More From The Irish Examiner