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'The guts was phenomenal': Manner of victory exactly what Andy Farrell wants Ireland to stand for

"It was some effort, some effort. The rest we can build on."

'The guts was phenomenal': Manner of victory exactly what Andy Farrell wants Ireland to stand for

New Ireland head coach Andy Farrell says Ireland's 19-12 victory over Scotland showed just what his team will stand for.

Farrell spoke during the week about wanting to see traditional Irish rugby; dominant forwards and a back-line capitalising on that platform.

He believes Ireland's try-line stands to hold out the Scots showed the guts he was seeking.

"Like I've been saying for the last week, we've got to stand for something and I think it's quite clear what we're trying to stand for. The guts was phenomenal really," Farrell told Virgin Media TV.

"Scotland are a very dangerous attacking outfit so for us to keep them out in that first half was outstanding. Then you get to that last five minutes and you see people putting bodies on the line, we were dropping like flies as well as far as injuries were concerned.

"It was some effort, some effort. The rest we can build on."

He praised, in particular, the performance of his forwards, name-checking Tadhg Furlong, Rob Herring, and man-of-the-match CJ Stander.

Ireland's CJ Stander with his six-month-old daughter Everli. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile
Ireland's CJ Stander with his six-month-old daughter Everli. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Rather than dwell on the nature of the performance, with a fancied Ireland hanging on for victory, Farrell believes the first-day win was all that counts.

"It was a tough old Test match. We're very happy to get the win. That's what you have to do in the Six Nations, especially in the first game, at home as well. Delighted to get the win and move on to next week.

"We got a little bit too excited at times in our decision-making. Some of it was good, some of it wasn't so good. We played with a nice flow when we got into the 22. It looked like we were making good yards there. Sometimes we got a penalty and we took that.

"There's plenty to work on but it's round one and we've had five training sessions. It's onwards and upwards hopefully."

Tadhg Furlong of Ireland is tackled by Jamie Ritchie, left, and Hamish Watson of Scotland. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile
Tadhg Furlong of Ireland is tackled by Jamie Ritchie, left, and Hamish Watson of Scotland. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Starting Caelan Doris over Peter O'Mahony was Farrell's stand-out selection, compared to the Joe Schmidt-era, but he was taken off the field after an early clash of heads.

"He's fine, he's smiling," said Farrell. "He had to go through the [HIA] protocols so he wasn't allowed back on. The same for Dave Kilcoyne as well."

He also explained Garry Ringrose's half-time withdrawal: "He's got a hand injury so we'll have to assess that and see how we go."

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