Ireland

O'Mahony primed for Pumas

Wed, 21 Nov 2012 09:43
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We're going to have to front up, everyone
Quote-end

Mention Argentina to any of the Ireland squad and the word 'physical' will quickly come into the conversation.

As he previews Saturday's showdown with the Pumas, there is no fear of Peter O'Mahony taking a backward step come match day.

If O'Mahony gets the nod for the year-end finale at this weekend, it will be his ninth cap in nine short months.

The Munster back row forward has made a swift transition from underage to senior international rugby, having debuted as a replacement for Sean O'Brien during the Six Nations win over Italy last February.

Appearances against New Zealand and more recently South Africa have battle hardened the 23-year-old, who is relishing this latest opportunity to test himself against another Rugby Championship outfit - Argentina.

The video analysis has shown O'Mahony that the South Americans remain a strong outfit up front, but they look a more 'rounded team' in recent months.

"It's going to be physical. Argentina have a big pack, they've a world class back row... [Juan Manuel] Leguizamon and [Juan Martin] Fernandez Lobbe. Their maul is very dangerous and they've a good lineout," said O'Mahony.

"As a 15 [team] we're going to have to front up, everyone. They're a very potent side. Since they've got into the Rugby Championship they have really improved. Even in its first year, they've come on in leaps and bounds and it's really helped them.

"They haven't gone away from that physical team they were - what they are known for being good at - but they've added other things and it's made them more of a rounded team."

Commanding the breakdown is a key focus for the Corkman and his back row colleagues this week, knowing how decisive an area it could be what is expected to a tight game.

"The breakdown is where international games are won these days and that's where we are going to be focusing on. Not just 1 to 8, not just the pack, it's a backs issue now as much as a forwards one.

"We're just going to look for a physical performance from 1 to 15. I keep bringing up their back row but as a 15, they are accurate and that's what you want at a breakdown.

"But we'll be focusing on ourselves, looking for opportunities to do better than they do there."

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