Ireland head towards Argentina crunch game
October 19, 2003
Ireland winger Denis Hickie slides in for his side's second try
© Getty Images
Ireland completed their expected 64-7 demolition job of African minnows Namibia at Aussie Stadium to set up a Pool A showdown with Argentina next weekend. Coach Eddie O'Sullivan saw his side shrug off torrential rain to register a 10-try win and record their biggest victory in World Cup Finals combat.
Back-row duo Alan Quinlan and Eric Miller will not have done themselves any harm with a couple of touchdowns and popular fly-half Ronan O'Gara added seven conversions to an excellent open-field kicking game.
Wing twins Denis Hickie and Shane Horgan both crossed, as did full-back Girvan Dempsey and his replacement John Kelly. There was even a first international try for prop Marcus Horan.
But as impressive as the win was, it may yet come at a cost if lock Paul O'Connell finds himself cited for trampling on opposite number Archie Graham as the Ireland pack rumbled towards their opponents' line in the middle of the second half.
Ireland coach Joe Schmidt won the tactical battle and set his team on course for a shot at the Grand Slam. Tom Hamilton reports from Dublin
With the World Cup only a few months away, the last thing France needed was doubts over the future of their coach, writes Huw Richards
They came to Murrayfield looking to put down a marker, but Scotland were sent home with their tails between their legs, writes Tristan Barclay
The controversial tackling technique will be in full swing in Dublin on Sunday, writes Conor O'Shea, and could be a decisive factor for Ireland