Full Ireland player ratings as Grand Slam dreams dashed on French rocks
FRANCE 30-24 IRELAND
France fully deserved their victory, in Paris, but Andy Farrell's side will rue a sloppy finish. Our Ireland player ratings are a real mixed bag.
France started like a freight-train and Antoine Dupont was over for a try after only 70 seconds. Melvin Jaminent added a conversion and a penalty, but a Mack Hansen try, straight from a restart, was converted by Joey Carbery and the contest was alive again.
What followed, over the next 30 minutes, was French physical dominance as the hosts added three more penalties to make it 19-7 at the break.
Ireland hopes of comeback with two early tries
Melvyn Jaminet kicked France 22-7 ahead, early in the second half, but the visitors responded with two tries in a short space - Josh van der Flier and Jamison Gibson-Park getting over. That made it 22-21, but France were still winning so many collisions.
After Gabin Villiere and Damian Penaud went close, on the left wing, loosehead Cyril Baillie went through three Irish players to get his side's second try. Jaminet had a rare missed kick and, heading into the final quarter, there was only six in it.
It was only three, with six minutes to play, when Joey Carbery stroked over a penalty. France steeled themselves for the final push, though, and Jaminet chipped over a penalty to make it 30-24 after Dan Sheehan had brilliantly stopped him from scoring a try.
Here's how we rated Andy Farrell's men in green.
IRELAND PLAYER RATINGS
Hugo Keenan - 5
A couple of early takes in the air. Got rag-dolled by Villiere at one stage. Over-cooked one kick that rolled dead and put his team under pressure. Made a lovely carry, early in the second half. Shunted Villiere over, in an act of mini revenge, to win his side a lineout. Got skinned by Penaud at one stage. Poor up-and-under at the end.
Andrew Conway - 5
Tight call went against him when he went up to contest a high ball with Jaminet. Pinged again for being ahead of Gibson-Park when he box-kicked. Got done twice in short succession, on 52 minutes, as France threatened for a second try.
Garry Ringrose - 5
Wandered into midfield without any real intent and failed to make a tackle, in the lead-up to Dupont's try. Got little change in midfield.
Bundee Aki - 6
Swallowed up and rammed back after being caught in two minds. Stuck 10 first half tackles as Ireland battled to hang on. Shipped a knock in the first half, but battled on for 63 minutes.
Mack Hansen - 8
Switched off for that quick France lineout at the start. Answered back with a stunning take and try from a Carbery restart.
Mack Hansen, ya beauty!!! 🤯 ☘️pic.twitter.com/Xwtq8OLOCe
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) February 12, 2022
Ireland looked threatening when he got a gallop up. 66 metres gained and stuck all his tackles. Hashed a late kick for touch, late on, and you could tell by his scream.
Joey Carbery - 8
Connected superbly with Hansen for that restart try. Put up one Garryowen that was a touch too far forward and let France off the hook. Some very brave plays in attack showed nerves were not fluttering too much. Nailed two touchline conversions. Started to enjoy himself in the second half.
Jamison Gibson-Park - 5
Not the only one to be rattled by a ferocious French start, but his passing and kicks were slightly off. Ghosted by Penaud, out on the wing. Had a poor first half but parked that in the second to step inside Willemse and snipe for a score. Improved as the game went on, but not his finest outing.
Andrew Porter - 7
Was Ireland's biggest scrapper in the opening stages, but crumpled under pressure from Antonio in a 20th minute scrum. Happened again, just before half-time. Made a great steal to set up an attacking lineout that Ireland scored from. Excellent in the loose but a tough scrummaging experience.
Rónan Kelleher - 5
Went off after 25 minutes after being involved in some crunching collisions. One decent carry but one turnover conceded. Irish set-piece was up against it.
Tadhg Furlong - 7
Enjoyed the physical contest, but didn't go all his own way. Ran into a couple of brick walls and was neutralised by Baillie as France targeted Porter on his side of the scrum.
Tadhg Beirne - 7
Made a crucial turnover at the breakdown, just outside his 22. Got in to charge down one Dupont kick. Lovely kick in behind to put France under pressure.
James Ryan - 6
Stuck his six tackles and made 11 metres off his three carries, but was another Irish forward that found the going tough. Went off after 39 minutes for concussion check, but returned for second half. Got up well for a lineout steal. As captain, he made the call to go for the posts with a late penalty.
Caelan Doris - 6
Got a pass slightly behind him but could not hold on, to concede a costly turnover. Made 11 tackles in the first 40, but conceded another turnover. worked his ass off in defence.
Josh van der Flier - 8
Made one lovely turnover at the breakdown and was carrying hard in those frantic early stages. Powered over for a try, early in the second half, that gave Ireland hope.
Jack Conan - 5
Bit of a nothing tackle on Ntamack when he offloaded for the Dupont try. Got himself isolated and turned over after an Irish lineout. Hacked a kick straight to Penaud. Only made three carries (seven metres) and stuck seven tackles, but game got away from him.
Dan Sheehan (for Kelleher '25) - 8
Off the bench and into the fire. Scrum struggled all evening, and Sheehan could do little to stop that. His evasiveness and steps had France second-guessing. Nice carry before Ireland's third try. Held up Jaminet to prevent what looked like a certain try.
Peter O'Mahony (for Conan '53) - N/A
No sooner was he on, he was getting shunted out of the way as France got their second try. Went off, soon after, for a Head Injury Assessment.
Iain Henderson (for O'Mahony '58) - 7
Got longer on his second HIA stint and made a nice offload to Gibson-Park. Big steal, late on.
Robbie Henshaw (for Aki '63) - 6
Conor Murray (for Gibson-Park '63) - 6
Cian Healy (for Porter '73) - N/A
Finlay Bealham (for Furlong '73) - N/A
Jack Carty (for Carbery '77) - N/A
One crazy, forward pass at the end.