Posts Tagged ‘ Australia ’

Ireland primed for Australia test

Brian O`Driscoll will lead Ireland out on Saturday for his 115th cap and in doing so the hopes of a nation will rest upon the shoulders of the much admired captain.

The Leinster man will lead Declan Kidney`s charges as they face a stern test in the form of Australia in a match that will go a long way to determining the outcome of Pool C. Ireland are aware that vast improvements are needed after the 22-1o victory over the USA last weekend.

Kidney has opted to reshuffle his pack by making four changes. Leinster duo Sean O`Brien and Cian Healy come in to the side replacing Shane Jennings and Tom Court. Both players have overcome injuries and will deputise having been rested for the opening clash with Eddie O`Sullivan`s America.

Rob Kearney and Eoin Reddan are also thrown in from the start in place of Geordan Murphy and Conor Murray, with the latter failing to flatter on his Irish debut.

Kearney has been drafted in as expected with his big game experience bound to aid the Irish cause.The Leinster man has proved in the past that he can step up to the plate and his strong tackling and experience under the high ball will be a crucial asset against the Wallabies.

Jonathan Sexton retains his place at fly half, despite his poor showing against USA. Ronan O`Gara will be disappointed not to feature from the start but the Munster native has thrown in credible performances from the bench and may well be called upon to do so again.

Ireland V Australia is live on Saturday morning from 9.30AM on RTE 1.  

By Glenn Dowd

IRELAND team to face Australia in RWC 2011 Pool C at Eden Park, Auckland on Saturday, 17 September (9.30am):

15 Rob Kearney, 14 Tommy Bowe, 13 Brian O’Driscoll, 12, Gordon D’Arcy, 11 Keith Earls, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Eoin Reddan, 1 Cian Healy, 2 Rory Best, 3 Mike Ross, 4 Donncha O’Callaghan, 5 Paul O’Connell, 6 Stephen Ferris, 7 Sean O’Brien, 8 Jamie Heaslip

Replacements: 16 Jerry Flannery, 17 Tom Court, 18 Donnacha Ryan, 19 Denis Leamy, 20 Conor Murray, 21 Ronan O’Gara, 22 Andrew Trimble

RWC:Ireland 22-10 USA

Two tries from Tommy Bowe and one from Rory Best ensured Ireland got their Rugby World Cup 2011 campaign off to a successful start against an emotionally charged USA.

Despite failing to flatter throughout Declan Kidney`s side ground out A 22-10 win, with a late Paul Emerick try adding some credibility to the scoreline on the tenth anniversary of the September 11 atrocities.

Ireland’s winning margin suffered from the poor kicking of Jonathan Sexton, who missed a host of chances until he was replaced by Ronan O’Gara.

Huge improvements will be needed ahead of next Saturday`s date with Australia, with Ireland needing to regain composure. Bowe overcame an error strewn performance to bag both tries, with the Monaghan man finding the slippery conditions hard to deal with.

Ireland were dangerous in flashes with Keith Earls and Brian O`Driscoll denied by the fierce strength of the USA.

Ireland were guilty of trying to play too much rugby and at times their tempo was a little frantic.

The scrum was proving a happy hunting ground and the USA were shunted backwards once more, allowing Sexton to dash clear of the first line of defence.

Ireland began pounding away at Eddie O`Sullivan`s charges and their reward came in the 40th minute when Bowe took an inside pass from Sexton and sped over the line with Sexton converting.

The Eagles approached every scrum with dread and their pack buckled under pressure once more, though this time they went unpunished as Sexton’s accuracy failed him.

O’Gara fared little better than Sexton on the conversion, directing his attempt well wide, but he was on target after Ireland ran in their third try.

The late Emerick try somewhat soured the win, and Irleand will have to up their game ten fold for the battle with the Wallabies next week.

Emigration To Eclipse The 1980`s

Irish emigration will accelerate and exceed the worst of the 1980s, when the country was last gripped by the claws of the recession , the Economic and Social Research Institute said.

100,000 people will leave the country in the two years through April 2012, the Dublin-based ESRI said in its quarterly report. Some 35,000 people left in the year to April 2010 and 44,000 departed in 1989, the biggest outflow in that decade.

The Irish population have been emigrating for centuries, with favoured destinations including England, Scotland, and America. However many Irish families are now looking to Australia as their future home.  

“The weakness in the labour market for younger people in particular has given rise to return of emigration,” the ESRI said today. “Our forecasts envisage a continuation of this.”

Ireland drew almost 400,000 immigrants in the nine years through 2008. Now, companies including Bank of Ireland Plc are shedding jobs, pushing the unemployment rate to 13.5 percent this year. The government, which accepted an 85-billion euro ($114 billion) aid package last month, is raising taxes and cutting spending, to narrow a fiscal deficit and rescue the banking sector.

The economy will expand 1.5 percent this year, the ESRI said today, cutting an October forecast of 2.25 percent. Gross domestic product will expand 2.25 percent in 2012, the organization said.

The news was all too apparent for the McCreavey family from Blackrock in Dublin. John and Sue were faced with a similar situation during the eighties but opted to remain in Ireland to bring their kids up. However their decision to stay has not been justified.

“Things were very bad in the eighties but we loved Ireland so much that we wanted our kids to be rared here. But now our two kids( aged 20 and 21) have little opportunites here and have to head abroad themselves in order to survive. It really makes us wonder why we stayed in the end” said John.

World News: Berlusconi, Protistutes and More

Acting President sworn in after Tunisia riots

The country`s parliamentary speaker has taken over as interim president after violence forced the nation`s president to flee to Saudi Arabia. The Department of Foreign Affairs are currently trying to aid Irish people in the country in an effort to get them home. 

100 Feared dead after Indian Stampede

Up to 100 people are feared dead after a stampede at the Sabarimala Shrine in India. Large crowds had gathered to mark the start of the annual Hindu religious festival of Makaravilakku. 

 Wikipedia Celebrates 10th Birthday  

The online encyclopedia founded by Jimmy Wales has reached its milestone tenth birthday

Flood Efforts Continue

Rescue attempts are still ongoing after large floods have damaged large parts of Australia, Brazil and Sri Lanka. 

Berlusconi Facing Prostitute Investigation

The Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is being investigated after claims emerged that he paid for sex with an underage prostitute.

EU Freezes Ivory Coast Assets

The European Union has tightened sanctions against Ivory Coast’s incumbent leader Laurent Gbagbo, freezing the assets of the country’s main ports, the state oil firm and three banks.

Ryanair Boarding Pass Charge Illegal (Spain)

A judge in Spain has ruled that Ryanair cannot charge passengers for failing to print out their own boarding cards.

Premier League Preview

This weekend`s fixture list throws up some exciting derby matches as the Premier League resumes following last week“s FA Cup third round matches.   


West Ham V Arsenal


With the backing of their tremendous fans, the Hammers may well pull off a result in what would appear to be Avram Grant`s last match in charge. However, Arsenal will be eager to avenge their recent results, with a 1-1 FA Cup Draw with Leeds and a 1-0 defeat to Ipswich in the League Cup semi final leaving Gunners fans aggrieved.


Verdict: Draw


Liverpool V Everton


This Merseyside derby always serves us a tense battle and Kenny Dalglish will be eager to get his first win as Liverpool manager over their arch enemies. He will have to do so without the services of the influential Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher. Dalglish will be hoping his side can improve on their disastrous midweek performance, where Blackpool came from a goal behind to beat the Anfield side for the second time this season.

Everton manager David Moyes will be hoping like Blackpool, that his side can do the double over Liverpool this season. However Everton may well struggle for goals as top scorer Tim Cahill is away on international duty with Australia. Expect the home side to edge this one with Fernando Torres putting his critics to shame.  


Verdict: Liverpool


Spurs V Man Utd


Man United travel to Spurs on Sunday for what should be an intriguing tie. United will find it tough against Harry Redknapp`s men and their unbeaten record in the Premier League this season faces a real threat.


Spurs will definitely frustrate the Red Devils, with a draw the most likely outcome.


Verdict: Draw


Chelsea V Blackburn


Chelsea host Blackburn Rovers at Stamford Bridge as they aim to put together a steady run of results following their desire form as of late. Roque Santa Cruz`s return to Lancashire will boost Steve Kean`s men and they will certainly be up for this match. However with their inconsistent form this season Rovers may just fall short.


Verdict: Chelsea   


Man City V Wolves


Roberto Mancini`s men will be aiming to crank up the pressure on Manchester United at the top of the table this weekend but they must not underestimate a Wolves side, who have beaten both Liverpool and Chelsea in recent weeks.

Mick McCarthy`s men will travel to Eastlands in a confident mood but the relegation candidates may well fall fowl to Edin Dzeko, with City`s new 27 million striker the catalyst for a title tilt.


Verdict: Man City   


Stoke V Bolton


Bolton travel to the Britannia Stadium this weekend hoping to maintain their push for  Europe. While the Trotters have produced some outstanding displays this term they may well come unstuck against Tony Pulis` men. A draw is the most likely result.




West Brom V Blackpool


Ian Holloway`s side will roll into the Midlands this weekend in confident mood after putting Liverpool to the sword in midweek. Blackpool have every reason to be confident ahead of this match as West Brom are on an alarming slide down the table after their early season exploits.


Verdict: Blackpool


Wigan V Fulham


Wigan will be eager to start putting more points on the board as they currently sit second bottom. A win over Mark Hughes` men may well move them out of the relegation zone but they must rely on results elsewhere. Fulham will provide stiff competition for the Latics as they are in a similar position. Should Roberto Martinez`s side win they will jump above the Cottagers but this match has draw written all over it.




Sunderland V Newcastle United


Sunderland host their fierce rivals in the second Tyne Wear derby of the season, with manager Steve Bruce still smarting after the Geordies thrashed the Wearsiders earlier this season.


Sunderland may well fall short again with key players missing through injury and suspension. Newcastle are no different with Andy Carroll set to miss out yet they still possess the quality to to the double over their neighbours.


Verdict: Newcastle  


Birmingham City V Aston Villa


These two sides meet at St Andrews with only a point separating them. This season has proved to be a frustrating one for both sides as they languish in the bottom half of the table. For Birmingham, its been a case of lacking goals while for Villa it has just been one long slide under Gerard Houllier. Birmingham look set to appease their goal drought with the signing of Spurs striker Robbie Keane while Villa are in the market for some new players, with Jean Makoun of Lyon undergoing a medical at Villa Park.

The incentive is their for both sides but Alex McLeish`s men may prove too strong for Villa.


Verdict: Birmingham City

PFAI Squad Finish Third

Liam Kelly`s PFAI squad finished third in a FIFPro Tournament today in Norway as they battled to earn contracts with professional clubs in Europe.

Norway, Sweden and Finland were the other countries taking part in the competition.

Ireland bowed out in the semi finals after a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Finland, with Sean Kelly grabbing the only Irish goal from the penalty spot.

Ireland sealed third spot with a one nil win over Sweden when ex St Patricks Athletic and Shamrock Rovers striker Mark Leech found the net.

The players were hoping to impress scouts and managers that were attending the event in Oslo and it remains to be seen if any have done enough to win deals with clubs. Brian Shelley, the man at the centre of the Bohemians controversy starred for the Irish side at right back with other notable performers including Eamon Zayed and Stuart Byrne. Shelley has been touted for a move to Australia while Zayed appears set for a move to his grandfather`s homeland of Libya