Certainly a game of two-haves, Ireland grew in confidence throughout to finish on a breathtaking high. However Ireland’s come back efforts in the dying minutes were not enough to surpass the early lead clocked up by France in the first half.
A first half hat-trick from Vincent Clerc gave France a 19-6 lead at the break. By this time it looked like we could be heading for an embarrassing scoreline however credit must be given to Ireland after mustering a defiant spell of attack propelled by outstanding work from the forwards.
After a penalty try, Ireland were rewarded with a boost in confidence and the unthinkable started to become very possible. The come back was on…
From an Irish perspective there are lots of positives to take, especially as France at home were always going to be the toughest challenge of the tournament. The next game will be in two weeks time against Scotland at home, after today’s performance we should expect a strong finish. It now seems that the triple crown is again the main focus for Ireland’s 2008 campaign.