Rugby Union: Lacklustre Ireland fail to impress

Ireland 53 Romania 35

Tries: Bell 2, Penalty tries 2, Tries: Vioreanu 2, Salomie

O'Shea, Scally, Ward Brezoianu, Sugigi

Cons: Elwood 3, Cons: Mitu 2 Humphreys 3 Pen: Mitu 2

Pens: Elwood, Humphreys

Half-time: 19-13

IT was a damp grey day in Dublin. The floodlights were on from the start but they failed to illuminate Ireland.

The Irish public believed their team would produce the goods and break new records but they were disappointed. Before the finish they were even wondering whether Ireland were worthy victors.

For their coach Warren Gatland it was a chastening experience against a side he described as awful in midweek. After yesterday he will have to rethink and wonder whether it was Romania or, in fact, Ireland who were awful. On this display it was the latter.

Ireland scored seven tries and their pace and forward strengths always indicated a home victory. Romania could excuse themselves after a midweek tussle with Georgia but they kept going as Ireland allowed them to stay in the match.

In the end, the leaky Irish defence let Romania in for five tries and the only difference was that Ireland were awarded two penalty tries by the New Zealand referee Paul Honiss.

South Africa - whom Ireland meet at Lansdowne Road on Saturday - will not lose too much sleep if they view the video evidence of this game; they could actually spare themselves the trouble.

Gatland showed his displeasure with a poor first-half performance when he made four changes at the break. For a time it looked as if Ireland might run riot, but the same old type of mistakes crept into their game. Romania, however, lacked the little bit of polish behind the scrum needed to take advantage. It appears to be the same old story for Ireland - a very good pack and too little to accompany it.

After an early flourish by Ireland the scene was almost set for a sensational opening score by the visitors when winger Gheorghe Solomie was sent away only to be called back for a forward pass.

It took Ireland 16 minutes to open their account and it came via a try from full-back Conor O'Shay, which Eric Elwood converted. Then referee Honiss was unbelievably quick in awarding a 19th-minute penalty try, which Elwood also converted, but the home side never took advantage.

The Romanian scrum-half Petre Mitu narrowed the gap with a 23rd-minute penalty and though Kieran Scally made it 19-3 with a fine individual try Ireland's display continued to be a catalogue of errors. A mix-up between Elwood and Pat Duignan allowed the full-back Mihai Vioreanu in for a try and then Solomie got another just before the break, at which point it was 19-13 for Ireland.

While Elwood stretched that with an early penalty, Radu Fugigi intercepted near his own line and scored a try that Mitu converted.

At 22-20 Ireland looked in all sorts of bother but an Elwood penalty, and a brace of tries by Jonathan Bell, converted by Elwood and the substitute David Humphreys stretched the gap to 19 points.

But Ireland were still far from impressive. Mitu kicked a penalty and while Andy Ward scored a try which Humphreys converted, Romania never gave up. Another intercept try from Gabriel Brezoianu, converted by Mitu, cut the gap to 16 points.

Ireland were awarded another penalty try for deliberate off-side and Humphreys converted, but a typically gritty Romanian side had the last word in injury time Vioreanu went in unopposed in the corner after a chip by Mitu.

Ireland: C O'Shea (London Irish); J Bishop (London Irish), P Duignan (Galwegians), J Bell (Dungannon), D O'Mahony (Bedford); E Elwood (Galwegians), C Scally (UCD); P Clohessy (Young Munster), A Clarke (Dungannon), P Wallace (Saracens), P Johns (Saracens, capt), M O'Kelly (London Irish), E Miller (Terenure College), V Costello (St Mary's College), A Ward (Ballynahinch). Replacements: J Davidson (Castres) for Johns, h-t; K Wood (Harlequins) for Clarke, h-t; D O'Cuinneagain (Sale) for Miller, h-t; K Maggs (Bath) for Duignan, h-t; J Fitzpatrick (Dungannon) for Wallace, 49; D Humphreys (Dungannon) for Elwood, 55; C McGuinnes (St Marys) for Scally, 58.

Romania: M Vioreanu (Timisoara University); R Fugigi (CSM Sibiu), G Brezoianu (Timisoare University), R Gontineac (Aurillac), G Solomie (Aurillac); R Vusec (Strasbourg), P Mitu (Steau Bucharest); D Niculae (Aurillac), R Mavrodin (Steau Bucharest), F Mariora (Dinamo Bucharest), M Dragomir (Steau Bucharest), V Doja (Dinamo Bucharest), A Manta (Aurillac), C Draguceanu (Steau Bucharest, capt), A Girbu (Oyonnax). Replacements: E Septar (Farul Constanta) for Dragomir, 40; C Lupu (Dinamo Bucharest) for Solamie, 45; M Ciolacu (Farul Constanta) for Gontineac, 55; O Slusarivc (Dinamo Bucharest) for Girbu, 61; P Balan (Dinamo Bucharest) for Mavrodin, 75.

Referee: P Honiss (New Zealand).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Sales Manager

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity to...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Manager - Production

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Trainee Managers are required to join the UK's...

Recruitment Genius: Telesales Manager

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will maximise the effective...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + uncapped commission : SThree: Hello! I know most ...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss