Ireland and the Rugby World Cup

Sir, – May I commend Gordon D'Arcy's article "In absence of constant evolution, our game plan became the rock Ireland perished upon" (Sport, October 23rd).

In the euphoria and despair of recent weeks, it strikes an even-handed analysis of the current Irish professional era.

As a small rugby-playing nation, we cannot afford to sacrifice a four-year cycle in pursuit of one goal. However, it seems to me that on at least three occasions we have peaked a year ahead of the holy grail.

I do believe, however, that the genuine, and not fickle, rugby supporter would sacrifice at least one final season of experimentation in the run-up to the next and future cycles. – Yours, etc,




Co Kerry.

Sir, – It’s a sign of how far we have come that we are genuinely surprised and disappointed at being badly beaten by New Zealand.

The fact that we know we could have done a lot better is a great credit to Joe Schmidt. – Yours, etc,


Dublin 6W.