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Ciara Griffin says break led t...
Women’s Six Nations

Ciara Griffin says break led to hunger as Ireland get Six Nations campaign up and running

Ann-Marie Donelan
Ann-Marie Donelan

21:59 10 Apr 2021

Ireland captain Ciara Griffin said their long wait to get the Women's Six Nations underway produced the hunger they displayed on Saturday evening. 

Adam Griggs' side beat Wales 45-0 at Cardiff Arms Park to get their campaign up and running.

Béibhinn Parsons and Eimear Considine both scored two tries each with Ireland offering up a particularly impressive performance in the first half.

It was just their second competitive game in 14 months and speaking after the game Griffin said it was clear to see how eager they were to get going.

"It's been our focus for the last few weeks building up [to the game]. We wanted to start quick, start fast and play at our tempo and put our stamp on the game.

"Credit to the girls, everyone out there knew their role, everyone executed it, there was a hunger there.

"You could see there was a real hunger in the group and that gave us the platform to play that attacking style of rugby for the first half and for the rest of the game.

"We were confident as a group in terms of the work we've done in camps and training. We've pushed ourselves to a different intensity level and that showed out there today in terms of fitness and work rate around the ball and gave us that good platform to work off."

Ireland looked particularly well prepared and coached for this clash.

Eve Higgins brought her Sevens experience to the championship by catching Welsh restarts and instantly putting the heat back on the hosts.

Sene Naoupu also went over the line in the first half and then Dorothy Wall went over late on for try number six with the hosts appearing to give up.

Griffin praised the attitude of her teammates at full time.

"I think a big that showed was our hunger and our hunger on both sides of the ball. We weren't just going through the phases. We were working to get their first.

"We wanted to win that race on both sides. You could see that on both sides and that was really pleasing to me.

"You could see everyone's never say die attitude and no one stepped off, everyone kept going to the last minute so I'm really, really happy."

The only possible downside to the performance is the fact they seemed to take the foot off the pedal a tad.

Having led 31-0 at the break they only scored 14 points in the second half.

Although not getting bogged down this, Griffin has targeted improvements as they now turn their preparations to hosting France next weekend.

"We still got 45 points, we'd be happy any day - 45 and not leaving anything in. That was a big thing for us, to protect our try line.

"After such a long break from matches, you're going to have rustiness or bits of errors but I'm happy it happened this week, to be honest.

"We've a lot to learn from that in terms of what went well and areas we need to tighten up on for next week but it's definitely putting us in a good position going forward.

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