HOW will Ireland fare on Sunday against Romania? We asked rugby expert Russ Petty (@rpetty80) for his best bet.
Ireland v Romania | Sunday 16:45 | ITV1
Ireland prop Jack McGrath said in the week that he didn’t think Romania would be heavily disadvantaged by having to play his team just four days after facing France. Having seen Japan lose the second half 33-3 against Scotland after a similar short turnaround, there might not be many that agree with him.
The Oaks proved a tough opponent for France to break down early, but they did miss approx. 20% of their tackles and had real problems with the lineout. Les Bleus dominated possession and territory after the break and the same could occur in this match.
I'd expect Ireland to show more precision in attack than France did against this opponent. Since Joe Schmidt took charge, Ireland have a halftime average advantage of nine points in games where they have started with a big handicap and 18 points in the second half.
This match is on track to break the attendance record for a Rugby World Cup match and with opposition that is likely to fade… it should be party time for the Irish after halftime.
Ireland v Romania – Ireland -21 Second Half Handicap (4/5 888 Sport)