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Jack Conan enjoying shift in Irish Rugby tactics

BY Philip Bendon  ·  Thursday Feb 8, 2024

Ireland number eight Jack Conan has expressed his enjoyment of Ireland’s implementation of a 6 – 2 split on the bench.

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Previously steadfast on picking a 5 – 3 bench split throughout his tenure, head coach Andy Farrell opted for an extra forward on the bench against a powerhouse French team in round one.

Ireland would go on to record a 38 – 17 victory despite France being down to 14 men for the bulk of the contest due to Paul Willemse’s red card; the men in green were truly dominant.

When asked about Ireland’s utilisation of the bench and general game plan in the build-up to the match, Conan was excited about the clarity the tactic afforded.

“You can kind of see from training throughout the week how it’s going to look, but you’re never too sure.

“But its something different with Ireland but its great especially when you’re getting a load of you coming on at the same time.

“It brings such an energy and such a buzz because everyone is dying to get on and prove themselves and add their value where they can.

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“I love being part of the 6 – 2, especially if you’re only covering one position. It means you’re not thinking, ‘well, if Pete (O’Mahony) comes off here am I going to six and if Caelen (Doris)  moves to seven and then am I going over to eight’ so I kind of knew I was only doing one role on the weekend.

“So you can put all of your focus into that (one position) from earlier on in the week, so it definitely helps.

“I thought the lads of the bench did great whether it was the scrum, line-out or around the pitch.

“So its always good to be involved in the 6 – 2.” He concluded.

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Next up for Ireland is a clash with a resurgent Italy team at the Aviva Stadium on Sunday afternoon.

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