Kidney: England not champs yet

Mon, 11 Feb 2013 13:06
Large declan kidney ireland stand Large brian o  driscoll ireland d Large jamie heaslip and declan ki

Ireland coach Declan Kidney refused to give up on his side's Six Nations Championship title chances after a 12-6 defeat by England.

Ireland coach Declan Kidney refused to give up on his side's Six Nations Championship title chances after a 12-6 defeat by England at Dublin's Lansdowne Road on Sunday ended their dream of a Grand Slam.

Ireland and England were the only two sides prior to Sunday's kick-off still in with a shot of a Grand Slam following first round victories over champions Wales and Scotland respectively.

But it was England alone, who haven't enjoyed a Grand Slam since their World Cup-winning year of 2003, that emerged with a chance of a clean sweep after fly-half Owen Farrell kicked four penalties to two from Ireland replacement Ronan O'Gara for the visitors' first Championship success in Dublin in a decade.

"This gives England a bit of daylight with the other five side on two points each with three matches to play," Kidney said.

However, having coached Ireland to Grand Slam glory three years ago, Kidney warned England still had plenty of steep obstacles to overcome if Red Rose coach Stuart Lancaster was to enjoy a similar success this season.

"We're extremely disappointed because that wasn't the result we wanted," said Kidney. Let's see what France come up with at Twickenham. England have to go to Cardiff too.

"There's still a hell of a lot to play for. What we have now are three more opportunities to get three wins. Let's get to eight points and see where we are at the end of it.

"The Grand Slam is a wonderful thing to win, but first and foremost you play for the Championship and we're still well in for that."

Ireland found themselves on the back foot early on but rallied on a rainy day in Dublin that made it tough to play the running game favoured by both sides.

In a brutal forward contest it was England, with captain and openside flanker Chris Robshaw outstanding at the breakdown in a performance that won him the man-of-the-match award, who had the edge.

Significantly, Ireland conceded more kickable penalties than England and, even allowing for the wet weather, the hosts made too many handling errors.

"I don't want to blame the conditions because both teams played in them," said Ireland captain Jamie Heaslip.

"There were a lot of knock-ons and unforced errors," the No 8 added. "I don't know what caused all the errors.

"It was frustrating and we constantly tried to regroup and go again. England played a good pressure game.

"There were a lot of sore guys in the changing room, particularly because of the hits they took but also because they lost in a green jersey at home."

Ireland's defeat was compounded by a tournament-ending foot injury suffered by full-back Simon Zebo, the worst of several knocks for Kidney's men in a bruising encounter.

And prop Cian Healy ran the risk of being cited for what appeared to be a stamp on England front row Dan Cole.

AFP

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 February 2017
Harlequins v Leicester Tigers 17h45 Twickenham Stoop
Edinburgh v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Myreside
Dragons v Leinster 19h30 Rodney Parade
Munster v Scarlets 19h35 Thomond Park
Sat, 25 February 2017
Sunwolves v Hurricanes 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Brumbies 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Force 08h45 Allianz Park
Saracens v Sale Sharks 12h45 Allianz Park
Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Franklin's Gardens
Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons 13h00 Sandy Park
Cheetahs v Lions 13h05 Bloemfontein
Scotland v Wales 14h25 BT Murrayfield
Kings v Jaguares 15h15 Port Elizabeth
Ireland v France 16h50 Aviva Stadium
Stormers v Bulls 17h30 Cape Town
Sun, 26 February 2017
Bristol v Bath 11h00 Ashton Gate
Wasps v Gloucester 12h30 Ricoh Arena
Treviso v Connacht 12h30 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Zebre v Ulster 12h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h05 Liberty Stadium
England v Italy 15h00 Twickenham Stadium
Mon, 27 February 2017
UCT-Ikeys v Maties 14h45 Cape Town
UWC v TUT 16h30 Cape Town
CUT-Ixias v UJ 16h30 Bloemfontein
Rhodes v Fort Hare 16h30 Grahamstown
UP-Tuks v Wits 16h30 Pretoria
CPUT v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Cape Town
Shimlas v NWU-Pukke 17h00 Bloemfontein
Thu, 02 March 2017
Force v Reds 10h30 Perth
Fri, 03 March 2017
Chiefs v Blues 06h35 Hamilton
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 24 February 2017
Reds v Sharks 28 | 26
Highlanders v Chiefs 15 | 24
Thu, 23 February 2017
Rebels v Blues 18 | 56
Tue, 21 February 2017
CUT-Ixias v Shimlas 13 | 22
Mon, 20 February 2017
UJ v UP-Tuks 18 | 11
UKZN-Impi v Fort Hare 16 | 10
UWC v Rhodes 88 | 8
Maties v NMMU-Madibaz 35 | 16
TUT v WSU 13 | 17
NWU-Pukke v UCT-Ikeys 20 | 15
Sun, 19 February 2017
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 46 | 31
Sale Sharks v Wasps 34 | 28
Sat, 18 February 2017
Connacht v Dragons 14 | 9
Ospreys v Munster 23 | 25
Leicester Tigers v Bristol 50 | 17
SIX NATIONS
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
England 2 2 0 0 8
Ireland 2 1 0 1 6
Wales 2 1 0 1 5
France 2 1 0 1 5
Scotland 2 1 0 1 5
Italy 2 0 0 2 0