Kiss: More to come from innovative Irish
September 26, 2011
Stephen Ferris wraps up Will Genia during Ireland's win over the Wallabies © Getty Images
Ireland defence coach Les Kiss insists that the 'choke tackle' which they used to strangle the life out of the Wallabies is not the only secret weapon that they have in their arsenal.
The Irish caused the biggest upset of the Rugby World Cup so far when they defeated Australia 15-6 in Auckland last Sunday week.
Their victory was founded on complete domination in the set-piece and it has already been noted that Declan Kidney's troops earned themselves a number of scrums by the way in which they went about tackling the Wallabies at chest height and then wrapping them up so as to make it extremely difficult for the player in possession to ground the ball.
"Other teams have already started copying it," said former league player Kiss, who devised the technique. "England took it on and were speaking to me about it after the Six Nations.
"Some things you can't keep under cover for too long. Certainly some teams are starting to look at the technique in a certain way. Fortunately, referees are looking at it in the context of the law and how it can be applied.
"We have a lot of tools in our box to use and we don't just rely on the choke tackle. That's the beauty of this side, we can put pressure on in different ways."
Ireland had the best defensive record in the competition after the second round of pool games but they slipped down the standings after surprisingly coughing up two tries to the Russians in Rotorua on Sunday. However, Kiss is happy with the team's defensive showings to date.
"We were in the position to have the best defence after round three. That isn't the case now, but it's still a good effort by the boys," said Kiss.
"The United States' try was an intercept and then there were the two against Russia. There are things to work on and this will make us hungry to improve, which is important.
"We're concerned when a point goes against us, particularly at set-piece. We are usually very good at defending set pieces. But I'm not going to hang myself on it, you have to take your hat off to them. They had fast backs with Sevens experience."
Rob Kearney, Sean O'Brien and Keith Earls picked up minor knocks during the victory over Russia but all are expected to make swift recoveries. Meanwhile Paul O'Connell, Gordon D'Arcy and Tommy Bowe are all due to train on Tuesday after missing the Russia match.
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