That’s all from me today. Thanks for reading, and thanks for the emails and tweets.
I am on Wales v Georgia duty tomorrow, so see you then. Bye!
Ireland are in action again next Saturday, 30 September, against tournament hosts Japan in Shizuoka.
Japan overcame some early nerves to comfortably see off Russia on Friday. But if Ireland can replicate that sort of display they’ll have too much against the Brave Blossoms.
As previously mentioned Scotland next face Samoa, in Kobe on Monday 30 September.
Stander made 43 metres with the ball in hand, with one clean line break, and made nine out of nine tackles. As we may have mentioned, the whole forward pack functioned beautifully.
Scotland’s Stuart McInally admits that Ireland won the collisions, but vows to improve …
Damian O’Brien, thanks for your email:
“Been following Guardian Sport coverage from Ndjamena in Chad this morning! … Impressed with Ireland’s start to RWC19. All the best.”
It was a belting start for Ireland. Their toughest pool opponents have been seen off in emphatic fashion. They can already start planning for the last eight, barring some bizarre and extremely unlikely turn of events.
Brian Berry emails:
“Having my breakfast beer in a cafe in Logroño in Spain. An Irish pub-free zone. Festivo de San Mateo in full swing. Knocks the socks off any fleadh ceól. Good result for the lads. No swelled heads or topless photos please.”
Read the match report, courtesy of Paul Rees, our man in Yokohama:
For those that missed it, Paul O’Connell made an interesting point about the way Ireland play before the match, saying they are ‘a very ruck-based team’, and that they rely on good kicking from Murray and Sexton to get field position.
Which is true … but then Ireland went out and scored three tries just thanks to awesome forward power. Schmidt likes to play a structured game, for sure, but Ireland are not a one-dimensional team by any stretch of the imagination. That defensive intensity, combined with precision from the back-line, in a potential QF against South Africa will be interesting to watch.
Nice stat from the Rugby World Cup boffins:
“The sixth match at RWC 2019 is the first in which the team that scored the first points of the match go on to win the contest.”
Brian O’Driscoll: “There will be a few injured guys worrying if they are going to get back in.”
Ireland skipper Rory Best speaks: “We know how good a team they are, and we are delighted with that win…We are under no illusions, that was a good start for us, but Joe and Faz will show us how much we need to improve.”
Faz being defence coach Andy Farrell.
Sir Ian McGeechan assesses that Scottish effort: “It was a lack of patience. They tried to force things. Ireland were far better, in every key area.”
Full-time! Ireland 27-3 Scotland.
All over. That was very one-sided. Scotland started by getting the ball in hand a couple of times, and showed their attacking intent in the first five minutes. But once Ireland had territory they overwhelmed Scotland with their power and precision. The forward pack in particular were extremely impressive, but there was nothing wrong with the back line, either. Ireland’s defensive organisation snuffed out Scotland’s attacking threat pretty much for the full 80 minutes and that is what might please Schmidt, and certainly Farrell the most about that display.
On a positive note for Scotland, they refused to wilt away, even when the scoreboard suggested the match was utterly beyond them. They tried to play rugby but the heavy rain in the second half could hardly have come at a worse time, as they were already chasing the match after 40 minutes.
Based on that performance, Ireland can be very confident of topping Pool A and setting up a quarter-final meeting with South Africa, who were beaten by New Zealand yesterday.
79 min: Ex-Ireland captain Paul O’Connell, on commentary: “It’s a very, very, very impressive performance.”
78 min: Hogg punches a little hole through the middle with a pacy run. Scotland continue to ask questions, but Ireland appear to have all the answers. It’s been a frustrating night for Scotland and they will also nervously await news about that injury to Hamish Watson.
77 min: Controversial email received!
“Following from a gym in Gündoğan, Turkey.
All very well being number one in the world and seeing off flashy Scotland in the driving rain, but do Ireland have enough of an attacking game to beat the top sides?
“They almost exclusively score from close range after set pieces or penalty punts to the corner.
“The Sexton wrap around and the Stockdale kick and chase seems to be all they have in the backline.”
What do you think …?
75 min: Answer – no, Scotland can’t. They lose the line-out. But still, they are putting 14-man Ireland under pressure as the clock ticks down.
74 min: Plenty of territory for Scotland in the final few minutes. Ireland are soaking it up. Scotland have a line-out right in the corner. Can they find a consolation try?
72 min: Scotland are coming at Ireland hard again. They are not going away, even if this match is beyond them on the scoreboard.
On the plus side for Scotland, this is a serious work-out ahead of their encounter with Samoa, which comes on Monday 30 September. They will go battle-hardened into the rest of the pool matches and the importance of that is easy to overlook.
71 min: Hai, Eoin Monaghan:
“In Hai Phong, Vietnam, completely on my own in a bar awaiting a wedding (not mine), cheering on the Irish. The staff are very confused.”
It’s a bonus-point win for Ireland following that fourth try by Conway. So it’s a good day’s work for Ireland and their fans can celebrate. It’s too early for a beer in Ireland though, isn’t it? [Insert crying with laughter emoji here.]
Yellow card! 69 min: Tadhg Beirne
Ireland down to 14. Barnes adjudges Beirne to have cynically slowed Scottish ball, with Townsend’s team on the attack. Now Scotland kick for a line-out. But then the tables turn and Ireland get their own penalty.
Penalty! 67 min: Ireland 27-3 Scotland (Jack Carty)
The lead grows for Ireland. But here come Scotland on the attack again, deep into the Irish half.
64 min: There have been a number of handling errors by Scotland. You will remember that they trained with rugby balls coated in shampoo. But in fairness, the intensity of the Irish defence is the main factor that is upsetting Scotland’s attempts to find a breakthrough. In terms of conditioning, Ireland look very fit and hungry. The coaches will be satisifed that they’ve paced everything right in terms of preparation. That Twickenham hammering by England is a distant memory – and besides Schmidt said he deliberately sent some players into that match with a bit of fatigue.
63 min: Reid, Price, Graham on for Scotland. Dell, Laidlaw, Seymour have gone off.
61 min: Declan Ryan emails:
You’re keeping me up to date on a ferry between Sopot and Hel. Thanks. Come on Ireland!”
Sopot, as we all know, is a seaside resort on the north coast of Poland. I went there last year, funnily enough, and had a lovely time. Enjoy the trip Declan.
Out in Yokohama, Ireland are still strangling the life out of any Scottish comeback.
60 min: Carty, McGrath and Beirne have come on for Ireland. Sexton is off, among others. Schmidt knows they have got this one in the bag.
59 min: Ireland are on the march again, with a cute little no-look pass by Chris Farrell, but it comes to nothing and Scotland have a scrum in their own half.
Try! 55 min: Ireland 24-3 Scotland (Andrew Conway)
Game over? Ireland sent an up-an-under into the Scottish 22. Scotland couldn’t win it and it was cleverly tapped back to Larmour by Conway, who then repositions himself to complete a simple finish in the corner. Murray misses the kick.
53 min: Replacements update! Dave Kilcoyne and Andrew Porter are on for Ireland, for Healy and Furlong. Simon Berghan and Blade Thomson on for Scotland, for Nel and Barclay.
52 min: Brendan Cuneen has been in touch on email:
“An Irish Canadian watching with your updates in Reggio Calabria.”
Looking good for your boys at the moment, Brendan.
50 min: Ireland have the put-in for a scrum about 10 metres out. It’s reset, then collapses, and the Irish have a free-kick and a chance to clear.
49 min: Really good, hard yards made by Scotland in the Irish 22. But there is a knock-on by John Barclay. Before that, it looked like Ireland were pretty obviously slowing the ball illegally but Barnes let it go. Ireland won’t mind an arm-wrestle, in view of how strong their forwards are looking, but Scotland are taking it to them here.
46 min: Scotland have Ireland under a little bit of pressure again. Murray kicks after a defensive maul for Ireland, and Seymour runs it back. Scotland are asking a few questions here. Hogg puts a nice kick into touch, towards the left-hand corner, and Rory Best will have the throw-in at a line-out.
44 min: It really is raining quite hard in Yokohama now. Chasing the game as they are, it’s not ideal for Scotland, who will want to get the ball moving through the hands if possible.
42 min: We have started as we finished, end-to-end. Scotland lose it while on the attack, Ireland burst down the right and over the try-line with Hogg covering. A push in Hogg’s back by the on-rushing Conway (who then touches the ball down) brings a penalty and relief for Scotland, though.
41 min: Thanks to Ireland fan Alex Henry for his thoughts, which are as follows:
“Impressed with Larmour, Kearney always gives such solidity at 15 that his absence would have been a slight concern, but he’s been excellent and even pilfered a turnover at the breakdown.”
Jonny Sexton puts boot to ball, and the second half is go in Yokohama. The rain is pouring, and the forecast is for lots more rain, according to my sources (Miles Harrison on ITV).
Half-time: Ireland 19-3 Scotland
Murray misses the kick – it seems Sexton has taken a knock which means he’s off kicking duty. Anyway, it’s half-time and Ireland can be very, very happy with how that went. The pack in particular have been awesomely strong and their defence all over the pitch has been typically organised. Don’t write Scotland off yet, though.
39 min: Conway with a class step on the right wing, just over halfway, after a very strong Irish scrum. But it’s brought back for a penalty, which could take Ireland’s lead to 19 on the stroke of half-time.
38 min: Hamish Watson has gone off due to that knee injury. Sad to see. He’s applauded off by the coaches and players on the Irish bench. His influence will be missed by Scotland for the rest of this match, at least.
38 min: With a break in play it’s time for both teams to take stock. A glance at the scoreboard is a fair reflection of how well Ireland have played, but Scotland have had their moments.
37 min: Hamish Watson, a key player for Scotland at No 7, has gone down with what looks like it could be a serious knee injury. Hopefully he can continue but he’s receiving lengthy treatment. The converted golf buggy has come on to the field, unfortunately, and it looks like his match is over.
36 min: Stockdale, having ended that last Scotland attack, now kicks ahead and collects after sprinting on to his own kick down the left. But Sam Johnson pulls off a brilliant tackle. Then it’s back in Scottish hands after a strong counter-ruck and a long kick finds Larmour in the Irish 22. It’s end-to-end as we approach half-time.
35 min: Scotland spend a little time in the Irish 22. They chuck it right, but Stockdale is out of the defensive line like a flash, and wraps up Hogg in a tackle he simply had to make with Seymour waiting out wide. Impressive defence – but the margins were fine there.
32 min: Scotland have given up three penalties so far, to Ireland’s two. Discipline, as always, is going to be key and Townsend’s men need to stay on the right side of referee Barnes if they are going to be under a lot of territorial pressure.
31 min: Ireland are on the attack again, following a brief Scottish raid which ended with a penalty awarded to Schmidt’s men, for Scotland going off their feet at a ruck.
30 min: Greetings, Andrew Gee, who emails:
“Following your live updates from a small TV-less cottage in the Calamuchita Valley, central Argentina…keep it up and many thanks…”
It’s a pleasure Andrew.
29 min: Let’s not forget that England were thrashing Scotland at the end of the Six Nations in March, and were eventually lucky to come away with a draw. Scotland have the strike runners to get back into this.