"I think England were just a bit more pumped today, for whatever reason" - Conor Murray 3 years ago

"I think England were just a bit more pumped today, for whatever reason" - Conor Murray

'Dressing Room 4' was packed with English players and media, as well as a healthy dollop of Irish and international press.

As the away side, England came in for the post-match press conference first. Eddie Jones was more circumspect than his usual self. He still made a couple of wry remarks but the Aussie was not for gloating.


As Joe Schmidt and Rory Best were next up, admitting to reality checks and being "bettered" in every aspect, the English players were filing into the mixed zone for their post-match media duties.

While the RFU press officer rolled out the likes of Mako and Billy Vunipola, Jonny May, Chris Ashton and Henry Slade, England assistant coach John Mitchell even popped his head around the door. A couple more England players followed.

You sensed that, with Best and Schmidt now wrapped, Ireland just wanted to get their men in and out of the make-shift media room. John Cooney was the first ushered in, to talk about his three minutes of Test action.

At least Cooney had done something of note in those three minutes, scoring a consolation try, but he couldn't tell us much about what was going on out on the pitch. We did learn that he was sitting beside Joey Carbery on the bench and that he was looking forward to playing Scotland next week.


Cooney headed off and the Irish media waited around and grabbed some thoughts from the English players until Conor Muray and Tadhg Furlong were ushered in. Furlong did 'print' while Murray did 'broadcast and online'.

Here is the full Q&A with Conor Murray after Ireland's 32-20 defeat:

"They [England] were on it today. We thought we would come out and changes things a little bit in the second half, but it wasn't to be and we ended up chasing it. When you're chasing a game like that, errors get seized upon and they took advantage of that.


"I thought England were really good, especially in the air. They cleaned up in the air and we struggled to get in a contest today. They took advantage of that. They kicked really well and overall we were fairly beaten."

Surprised by how high England pressed up?

"They're a top side and they put in some really good hits out there. A little bit of a struggle to get front-foot ball but at times I thought we weathered the storm and got back into it, but they stayed in the fight. I think they were just a bit more pumped today for whatever reason. We'll go through it and find out why that was. We had a great two weeks of preparation but for whatever reason, we were a little bit off it today and they're a top side. They fairly deserved their win."

Disappointed with last quarter?


"Your errors are going to be taken advantage of when you're chasing the game and they did that with Slade's intercept [try]. When you're chasing the game from deep, they can afford to be higher and afford to put a lot more pressure on you.

"I thought we could have managed the game better... I don't know, we're going to have to review it."


Tricky trip to Murrayfield now and three away games?

"That's the exciting thing, I think. This group has been through good days and bad days and we've bounced back well and we're going to have to really fight this week and dust ourselves down. Not feel sorry for ourselves, we know we're capable of big performances, but we were just a bit off.


"It's a great place to go to try and get a win to get back on track. Scotland are a quality side and we'll dust ourselves off, learn from it and head into next week ready to go."

Giving England the bonus point and a five-point head-start not the best.

"Look, it's done and we don't really think about that. Come the last day it might be significant, it might be not. We'll review the game, look at where we went wrong and why we were off it and focus on Scotland."

Making sure we don't get outmuscled again?

"Exactly. You can spin it that way and look at it as a positive. You don't feel like that now because it's a loss and it's tough to take but we were off a little bit, probably physically to start things off, there's no science to it, we were just off it a little bit we didn't front up and just lost the collisions.

"That was that in a nutshell, obviously there are other areas we want to look at but physically we know we can be there, we can be up at that level, we were just off and we've got to sort that out. I've full confidence in this group, I genuinely do.

"We'll have a hard look at ourselves. We are an honest group, we'll regather ourselves and go again."

How are you feeling yourself?

"I'm feeling good, I feel match-fit at this stage. I think that was my ninth game. Everyone is going to be disappointed with areas of your game when you have a loss and that's just the nature of the sport. We'll move on and try to get better, and play better as a team and individuals next week."

What is Joe Schmidt like after a loss?

"We are well used to it. I think the players are going to drive it as much as Joe and the coaching staff. We are bitterly disappointed as a player group that demand high standards and we didn't meet that this evening.

"All credit to England, they were good today and we were a little bit off, the coaches will review the game and give us solutions and things we can work on but as a playing group we are going to be honest with ourselves and drive it ourselves. We want to get this back on track."

Damaging to confidence?

"We are a very realistic group and we don't get ahead of ourselves. After a defeat like that, while it looks quite bad it's small things that will need fixing. We were just a bit off, a little bit flat and at the start we gave England...they overthrew at the lineout, got momentum and eventually scored.

"That was a quick way to give them front foot in to the game and they grew at that. We battled back well, we don't go away that easy so we'll regather and go again next week."

And with that, Murray and Furlong departed the scene.

Mako Vunipola was still holding court and Jamie George was doing a TV interview somewhere near the showers.

It was England's night and they dominated post-match too.