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'Disappointed' Andy Farrell -...
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'Disappointed' Andy Farrell - Ireland still in control of their own destiny

Stephen Doyle
Stephen Doyle

15:56 9 Mar 2020

Andy Farrell accepts and understands that Ireland's last Six Nations game had to be postponed but has expressed disappointment on behalf of his players.

The Ireland head coach was reacting to the news that tournament organisers postponed the round 5 match between France and Ireland this weekend, following instructions from French authorities in their attempts to contain the spread of Covid-19.

It follows the postponement of Ireland's match against Italy which was due to take place last weekend, two weeks after the defeat to England at Twickenham.

"The reaction of the players when we've come off the back of a good morning's work was one of deflation a little bit, yeah...gutted," Farrell said at an IRFU press conference this afternoon.

"We've built up for a couple of weeks on the back of a bit of disappointment and we were looking forward to the week ahead for ourselves.

"We're disappointed that it's not going ahead but at the same time, we fully understand."

The Ireland head coach had only got the news just before speaking to journalists and said that they have started to make plans for the squad with regard to the remainder of this international window but he had no details on those plans yet.

It was relayed to Farrell that October 31 has been mooted as a date for the final round of Six Nations matches to be played while a date also needs to be set for the clash with the Azzurri.

"We've got a window for that," said Farrell.

"Some teams, they always schedule four [matches] in [the Autumn international window] but we've scheduled three in November so we've got a window there. We're very open to that."

Farrell also spoke confidently about how the squad and coaching team had reacted following their defeat to England and how he believed they had put good plans in place for the Italy and France matches.

He also remains bullish regarding Ireland's chances of winning the Championship.

"We're more than in it," said Farrell.

"We're a team that's still in control of our own destiny aren't we?"

England and France have both taken 13 points, Scotland are on 10, just one point ahead of Ireland who have played one match less than the teams above them.

That means simply that two bonus point wins against Italy and France would seal a 15th Championship title for Ireland.

"Everyone knows that the Six Nations is unbelievably difficult," added Farrell.

"Everyone judges a performance but at the end of the day, we're two wins from three and so are a couple of other teams and some teams are below that.

"Regarding the outcome of those games, our destiny is still in our own hands. We're in a good spot."

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