O'Sullivan pleased with one-sided affair

Ireland 55 - USA 6
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The Independent Online

Seven tries, none conceded, and just one missed tackle. Not a bad afternoon's work for Ireland, but given the standard of the opposition perhaps more could have been expected from the world's sixth-ranked side.

Seven tries, none conceded, and just one missed tackle. Not a bad afternoon's work for Ireland, but given the standard of the opposition perhaps more could have been expected from the world's sixth-ranked side.

Ireland's coach, Eddie O'Sullivan, was not particularly concerned. "It took us a while to get into the game, playing as we did, into a strong wind and rain in the first half," he said. "Once we got field position and kept them under pressure the scores were going to come.

"The guys who haven't been playing Test rugby for a while, quite a few of those got a good hit out. A good example was David Humphreys. At the start of the game he looked a bit rusty, which you'd expect, but as the game went on he grew in stature and by the end he was really controlling the game. The US are mostly amateur players and they would struggle over 80 minutes of professional rugby. We knew for the first 40 they were going to throw everything but the kitchen sink at us and they would do the same for the second 40 - but there weren't many kitchen sinks left after half-time."

A number of Ireland's fringe players pressed their claims, with Eric Miller putting in a doughty performance, capped by the opening try on 24 minutes.

An early second half brace from Geordan Murphy displayed his evident form, and late efforts from Frankie Sheahan, Marcus Horan and Peter Stringer saw Ireland chalk up a comfortable win.

"The game was all about getting me on the international ladder - that was always the idea," said the Munster openside Denis Leamy, who broke his Ireland duck behind a Munster front five. "I started to get going and get a bit of ball. They were piling in on us - it was tough going in that area."

Ireland: Tries Miller, Murphy 2, Bowe, Horan, Stringer, Sheahan; Conversions Humphreys 7; Penalties Humphreys 2. USA: Penalties Hercus 2.

IRELAND: G Murphy (Leicester); S Horgan, B O'Driscoll (capt, both Leinster), K Maggs, T Bowe; D Humphreys (all Ulster), G Easterby (Leinster); M Horan, F Sheahan, J Hayes, D O'Callaghan, P O'Connell (all Munster), S Easterby (Llanelli Scarlets), E Miller (Leinster), D Leamy (Munster). Replacements: A Foley (Munster) for S Easterby, 73; P Stringer (Munster) for G Easterby, 69; G Dempsey (Leinster) for O'Driscoll, 78.

UNITED STATES: F Viljoen; A Lakomskis, P Emerick, S Sika, D Fee; M Hercus, M Timoteo; M MacDonald, M Wyatt, J Waasdorp, A Parker, G Klerck, B Surgener, K Schubert (capt), T Petruzzella. Replacements: T Mo'unga for Petruzzella, 48; D Williams for Timoteo, 63.

Referee: R Dickson (Scotland).

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