Ireland’s Rob Kearney tackles Israel Folau during Saturday’s international rugby match against Australia at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: Cathal McNaughton/Reuters

Game bookended by massive and vital hits – first from Zebo, second from O’Connell

 Australia’s Michael Hooper  in action against France  at The Stade De France  Paris, France. Photo: Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images

Ireland can use their scrum to expose Australia’s defensive frailties

Simon Zebo goes over to score one of six Irish tries against Georgia. Ireland took advantage of Georgia’s ill-discipline in the second half. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

Halfbacks and lineout impressive but scrum continues to be an issue

Ireland’s number seven scores the all-important first try against the Springboks but perhaps he didn’t get the credit he deserved. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho.

More attention to detail in Irish camp than from some supporters

South Africa’s Duane Vermeulen tries to stop Ireland outhalf Johnny Sexton at the Aviva Stadium. Photograph: PA.

In the face of such physical onslaught mind proved just as important as matter

Victor Matfield: one of the best lineout operators the world has ever seen. Photograph:Billy Stickland/Inpho

Joe Schmidt’s men braced for the inevitable massive physical challenge the Boks represent

Toulon’s  Romain Taofifenua and Ulster’s Tommy Bowe compete for a loose ball  during the  Champions Cup clash at the Kingspan Stadium in Belfast. Photo:  Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Romain Taofifenua was guilty of top-end stupidity and the punishment should have reflected that fact

Toulon’s outhalf Matt Giteau  is tackled by Llanelli Scarlets’ full back Liam Williams during last week’s  European  Champions Cup clash at  the Mayol stadium in Toulon,  France. Photo: Bertrand Langlois/Getty

The best outhalf in world rugby graces Irish soil this weekend as European champions arrive in Belfast

Ulster’s Paul Marshall in action against  Glasgow. “He’s super-talented, sharp and very busy with a lightning pass off both hands and over the weeks he’s adding a great kicking game.” Photo: Stephen Hamilton/Presseye/Inpho

Given Leicester Tigers’ injury woes, visit to Welford Road looks ideally timed

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