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Player Ratings: Ireland Impress In Emphatic Victory Over Wales

Player Ratings: Ireland Impress In Emphatic Victory Over Wales

A week on from an underwhelming performance against Scotland, Ireland were much improved against Wales on Saturday. They looked far better in attack - scoring four tries - while still being ferocious and solid in defence. It was a 24-14 win in Andy Farrell's second game in charge.

Here's how we rated the Irish performances:

Jordan Larmour - 7.5

Did brilliantly to dance through the Wales defence, and evade five defenders, for the opening Ireland try. Also did well to ship a pass onto Andrew Conway for the bonus-point try. Looked solid at fullback.

Andrew Conway - 7.5

Showed intelligence with kick down line in his first real chance to run with ball in hand, a move which eventually led to Tadhg Furlong's first half try. Great finish in the corner for Ireland's bonus-point try. Also looked good under the high ball and defensively very solid.

Robbie Henshaw - 7

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Showed a real desire to break tackles. Two offloads in one move really caught the eye in the first half. Both created space and showed the potential of what Ireland's attack could be. Unfortunately left the pitch in the 44th minute for a HIA. Still, he carried ten times for 90m.

Bundee Aki - 7

Carried 13 times for 90m and made eight tackles. Won a great turnover 12th minute with Wales inside Ireland 22.

Jacob Stockdale - 6.5

Like Andrew Conway, Stockdale was a major beneficiary of Ireland's desire to get the ball wide. He had as many carries in the first half as he had in the full 80 minutes against Scotland. Carried six times for 89m.

Johnny Sexton - 7.5

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Seemed to annoy referee Romain Poite at times with his chat but made some good decisions as captain otherwise including going to the corner for the penalty which led to Josh van der Flier's try. First conversion kick of the game was awful but was successful with the two which followed. Showed great ingenuity late in the first half to create space and send Andrew Conway down the line as Ireland looked to relieve pressure. Got the backline moving and kept the Welsh defence guessing. Also made 13 tackles.

Replaced by Ross Byrne with ten minutes to play.

Conor Murray - 6.5

There was far more zip to his pass than against Scotland but wasn't helped by some slow ball coming from the breakdown. Use of the boot was also better than last week.

Cian Healy - 5.5

Carried just twice for two metres and made seven tackles during 51 minutes on the pitch. Part of an Ireland pack which was destroyed in the first scrum of the game but became more stable throughout the game.

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Rob Herring 6.5

Just like against Scotland, his lineout throws were reliable. Lucky in the 55th minute when he failed to tackle Hadleigh Parkes and the centre should have touched down for a try. Carried six times for 39m and made 12 tackles.

Replaced for Ronan Kelleher in 67th minute.

Tadhg Furlong - 7

Whistled for a penalty as Ireland were destroyed in the first scrum of the game five metres from the Wales line. Scrum was far more solid thereafter and he crashed over for a try - his fourth in eight tests - following a more stable set piece. It was his fourth try in eight tests. Carried six times for 22m and made 12 tackles.

Replaced for Andrew Porter in 67th minute.

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Iain Henderson 6.5

Carried nine times for 21m and made 13 tackles. Part of a very solid Irish defensive performance.

Replaced for Devin Toner in 67th minute.

James Ryan - 8

Had 12 carries for an impressive 49 metres. He was also Ireland's top tackler (19) and number one lineout option (4). One mistake was losing grip on a lineout throw midway through the first half with Ireland in the Wales 22. Very good otherwise. Along with CJ Stander, he was Ireland's standout player.

Peter O’Mahony - 7

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A major part of a ferocious Irish defence. Made 13 tackles and carried four times. Brilliantly robbed a lineout in the Wales 22 early in the second half. Also won three lineout throws.

Replaced by Max Deegan with ten minutes to play.

Josh van der Flier 7.5

Made an impact early on with a great tackle on Dan Biggar in the first minute to force a five metre scrum. Touched down for Ireland's third try after a maul drove him over the line. Made 14 tackles in a tireless afternoon.

CJ Stander - 8

Ireland's best player along with James Ryan. Though he didn't have as many tackles (12) or carries (9) as last weekend, he had some majorly impactful moments. Won two big turnovers in the first half, the first in the 15th minute after Ireland lost the ball in Wales 22 and the second in the 22nd minute with them making progress toward the Ireland 22. Third turnover came in the middle of the pitch early second half.

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Replacements:

Ronan Kelleher - not on pitch long enough to rate

Replaced Rob Herring in the 67th minute.

Dave Kilcoyne - 6.5

Replaced Cian Healy 51st minute.

Helped with a massive penalty from a scrum in the 64th minute with Wales camped in the Ireland 22. Made an incredible 11 tackles in his half-hour on the pitch and also a strong case for a starting spot against England.

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Andrew Porter - not on pitch long enough to rate

Replaced Tadhg Furlong in 67th minute.

Devin Toner - not on pitch long enough to rate

Replaced Iain Henderson in 67th minute.

Max Deegan - not on pitch long enough to rate

Replaced Peter O'Mahony with ten minutes to go.

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John Cooney - not on pitch long enough to rate

Replaced Conor Murray with 8 minutes to play.

Ross Byrne - not on pitch long enough to rate

Replaced Johnn Sexton with 10 minutes to go.

Keith Earls - 6.5

Came on for Robbie Henshaw, who underwent a HIA in the 44th minute. Looked solid and energetic at outside centre.

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PJ Browne
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