Rugby Union: Jenkins joy as Wales upend Irish optimism

Ireland.......21 Wales............. 30 Tries: Costello, Ward Tries: Bateman, Morgan, N Jenkins Con: Elwood Cons: N Jenkins 3 Pens: Elwood 3 Pens: N Jenkins 3

IN THE week that Ireland raucously celebrates a Welshman as the harbinger of faith it was bristling with irony that 15 of St Patrick's descendants should descend on Irish rugby's spiritual home and shatter the belief engendered by an act of revelation in Paris two weeks ago.

The Liffey may have been bright green, but it was the visitors from across the Irish Sea who were painting the town red in Dublin on Saturday night.

Few Welshmen had cause to celebrate than Neil Jenkins. Restored to his favoured position as stand-off after a torrid match at full-back in the 60-26 drubbing by England, the Dragons' dead-eye marksman contributed a resounding 20 points, including a match-winning try, to help Wales to their first victory over Ireland since 1994.

"To come back like that when we were two tries down shows the character in this side," Jenkins said. "We worked hard in the back line and I thought our scrums were immense in the second-half. Now we have got to carry that on against France even though it will be very tough."

Tough, yes, but then the Irish were billed as no-hopers when they travelled to the Stade de France only for men in green to deliver a brutal kick to the backsides of those doom-mongers who seriously underestimated Warren Gatland's spirited side.

Beaten by one point against the Scots before a heart-rending 18-16 defeat by France, Ireland could now finish this Five Nations campaign without a point for the first time since 1992. The wooden spoon would be a cruelly unjust prize.

All of which was not lost on David Corkery. The Bristol flanker is well aware that gusty losers will not be tolerated for much longer by Ireland's passionate rugby following. "It's all a case of could-have but that's not good enough, both for ourselves and the team management and the Irish public. It's demoralising.

"We could have a record of played three, won three, but in a year's time, all people are going to see is Ireland at the bottom of the table. They're not going to remember any performances."

Those expectations raised in Paris were vividly clear in the early confrontations as Ireland blustered into a 12-3 lead. Tries from Andy Ward and Victor Costello set the home crowd's pulses racing. Then came Jenkins' palpitation- inducing garryowen that brought a try for Allan Bateman. Jenkins further prompted mass cardiac failure as his metronomic goalkicking gnawed away at both the Irish lead and their hard-earned self-belief. Three conversions and three penalties softened them up before Jenkins' late try pummelled Ireland into submission.

"He's the master, isn't he?" mused the replacement No 8, Stuart Davies, whose charge off the base of the scrum created Jenkins' late try. "I was behind the posts warming up for a lot of his kicks and the Irish lads didn't move. He just bisected them every time. It does put a lot of pressure on the opposition knowing that penalties are going to prove costly."

If Ireland's match was typified by one player, it would be the hapless Eric Elwood. Having scored Ireland's other points with three penalties and a conversion, Elwood's handling and vision were laboured and error- prone where Jenkins' were fluid and precise. Thus, Ireland's rapid and potentially ruinous wingmen, Richard Wallace and Denis Hickie, were reduced to bit-part players.

"Since England we've had to show great character and now that we have improved on the last two Five Nations performances by winning two games, we can take on France with more confidence," Kevin Bowring, the Wales coach, said.

IRELAND: C Clarke (Terenure College); R Wallace (Saracens), K Maggs (Bristol), R Henderson (Wasps), D Hickie (St Mary's College); E Elwood (Galwegians), C McGuinness (St Mary's College); R Corrigan (Greystones), K Wood (Harlequins, capt), P Wallace (Saracens), P Johns (Saracens), M O'Kelly (London Irish), D Corkery (Bristol), V Costello (St Mary's College), A Ward (Ballinahinch). Replacements: P Clohessy (Young Munster) for Wallace, 54; R Nesdale (Newcastle) for Wood, 54; E Miller (Leicester) for Ward, 62.

WALES: K Morgan (Pontypridd); W Proctor (Llanelli), A Bateman (Richmond), L Davies, G Thomas (both Cardiff); N Jenkins (Pontypridd), R Howley (Cardiff, capt); A Lewis (Cardiff), G Jenkins (Swansea), D Young (Cardiff), M Voyle (Llanelli), A Moore, R Appleyard, C Charvis (all Swansea), K Jones (Ebbw Vale). Replacements: J Humphreys (Cardiff) for G Jenkins, 60; S Davies (Swansea) for Jones, 60; L Mustoe (Cardiff) for Young, 71.

Referee: E Morrison (England).

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
fashionHealth concerns and 'pornified' perceptions have made women more conscious at the beach
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Sport
Ojo Onaolapo celebrates winning the bronze medal
commonwealth games
Arts and Entertainment
Rock band Led Zeppelin in the early 1970s
musicLed Zeppelin to release alternative Stairway To Heaven after 43 years
Arts and Entertainment
High-flyer: Chris Pratt in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'
filmHe was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
Sport
Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
footballA colourful discussion on tactics, the merits of the English footballer and rebuilding Manchester United
Life and Style
Sainsbury's could roll the lorries out across its whole fleet if they are successful
tech
Travel
The shipping news: a typical Snoozebox construction
travelSpending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Arts and Entertainment
'Old Fashioned' will be a different kind of love story to '50 Shades'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin's 'My Bed' is returning to the Tate more than 15 years after it first caused shockwaves at the gallery
artTracey Emin's bed returns to the Tate after record sale
Arts and Entertainment
Smart mover: Peter Bazalgette
filmHow live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences
Environment
Neil Young performing at Hyde Park, London, earlier this month
environment
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Project Coordinator

Competitive: The Green Recruitment Company: The Organisation: The Green Recrui...

Project Manager (HR)- Bristol - Upto £400 p/day

£350 - £400 per annum + competitive: Orgtel: Project Manager (specializing in ...

Embedded Linux Engineer

£40000 - £50000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Embedded Sof...

Senior Hardware Design Engineer - Broadcast

£50000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: Working for a m...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz