Gerry Thornley: Andy Farrell’s best move of the season was to enlist Paul O’Connell

The youthful, vibrant romp over the USA was an enjoyable way to sign off for the campaign

Robert Baloucoune scores a try on his Ireland debut against the USA. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Robert Baloucoune scores a try on his Ireland debut against the USA. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Rewind to March 14th at Murrayfield. With four minutes remaining, Ireland had just been pegged back to 24-all, having lost to Wales and France before beating Italy. A ho-hum season was shaping into a decidedly ho-hum Six Nations.

Thankfully Johnny Sexton landed the difficult 77th minute penalty to seal a win, whereupon Ireland saved their best ’til last when England came calling a week later.

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