|Eire: (31) 59|
|Tries: Beirne, Doris, Hansen, Sexton, Lowe, Aki 2, Herring Cons: Sexton 4, Byrne 4 Pen: Sexton|
|Tonga: (13) 16|
|Attempt: Fifita Con: Havili Pens: Havili 3|
Eire continued their profitable begin to the World Cup with a bonus-point victory over Tonga on a landmark evening for Johnny Sexton in Nantes.
The Six Nations Grand Slam winners moved clear with early tries from Tadhg Beirne, Caelan Doris and Mack Hansen.
Sexton added a fourth to surpass Ronan O’Gara as Eire’s document scorer.
Vaea Fifita scored for Tonga earlier than half-time however James Lowe, Bundee Aki – with two – and Rob Herring capped one other resounding Eire win.
Whereas the Irish encountered extra complications right here than they did of their 12-try destruction of Romania, Andy Farrell will probably be happy that his aspect moved on to 10 factors earlier than subsequent week’s eagerly anticipated encounter with holders South Africa in Paris.
Crucially, the world’s quantity one-ranked workforce once more appeared to keep away from accidents to key gamers with Farrell even afforded the posh of ending Sexton’s evening at half-time after the out-half’s record-breaking contribution.
Tonga, who didn’t play final week, will look to bounce again after they tackle Scotland in Good on Sunday week.
Sexton breaks O’Gara’s document
Having watched his aspect blow away Romania of their opening match final week, Eire head coach Andy Farrell recognised the menace posed by Tonga by naming a close to full-strength workforce.
And whereas Tonga, who had 4 former All Blacks of their line-up, represented a transparent step-up in high quality from Romania, the Irish quelled their opponents’ early vitality to safe the bonus level earlier than half-time.
Sexton was, as soon as once more, instrumental to an Eire win. The 38-year-old, who will retire after the World Cup, ended the evening on a profession whole of 1,090 factors, seven away from O’Gara, earlier than being hooked on the break along with his job finished and the bonus level within the bag.
“I do not assume it’s about particular person achievements this night,” Sexton stated after the sport.
“It’s about getting the following win and preserve constructing on this event. It is week-on-week in a World Cup and you have to provide it week after week.”
Whereas Tonga impressed early on, by the point Sexton dotted right down to bag Eire’s bonus level, it solely regarded like being a Fifteenth straight win for Farrell’s aspect.
Eire get job finished earlier than Boks showdown
In the end, Eire simply had an excessive amount of for the Fifteenth-ranked workforce on this planet.
With Sexton and William Havili having exchanged early penalties, Eire prop Andrew Porter had an opener dominated out by the tv match official (TMO) for Hansen’s knock-on.
Eire weren’t compelled to attend lengthy, nonetheless, as Beirne broke Tonga’s early resistance. The Munster lock, who scored twice in opposition to Romania, stretched to the touch down beneath the posts, wrapping up a transfer that was began by Sexton’s swap of play.
Havili’s second penalty lowered the deficit to 4 however Eire have been gifted a second strive, with Doris going over after Solomone Kata’s foul on James Lowe handed the Grand Slam winners a penalty deep contained in the Tongan 22.
If Eire’s second was right down to Tonga’s indiscipline, their third was a product of Hansen’s winged wizardry. After accumulating a Keenan move, the Connacht wing danced by means of a sea of pink jerseys and moved the Irish additional clear.
And whereas Ronan Kelleher did not floor the ball, Eire’s captain quickly delivered the bonus level as he slipped by means of the Tongan defence to attain his third strive of the event and transfer previous O’Gara’s mark of 1,083 factors, and added the conversion earlier than he was changed by Ross Byrne at half-time.
Undeterred, Tonga completed the half strongly. After Eire flanker Peter O’Mahony was sin-binned, the Pacific Islanders piled on the stress earlier than Fifita crossed.
Sadly for Tonga, they have been unable to construct on a rousing finish to the primary interval, however whereas they started to point out indicators of fatigue, Eire’s insatiable urge for food for tries shone by means of.
First, Lowe dived over following a maul earlier than the in-form Aki emulated his double in opposition to Romania to proceed his distinctive begin to the event.
Then Herring – who was earlier denied a strive by the officers – wrapped up victory for Eire, for whom it was one other job effectively finished.
Eire can get pleasure from a relaxation on Sunday earlier than focus switches to Saturday’s heavyweight showdown with three-time champions South Africa on the Stade de France.
‘Greatest nonetheless to come back from relentless Eire’ – evaluation
Former Eire flanker Chris Henry on BBC Radio Ulster: “That is a fairly superior end result. Eire are simply so ruthless and relentless.
“Tonga, we knew they have been gong to place up a battle however nonetheless the rating line is unbelievable and the whole lot continues to be simply pointing in the best path for this Irish workforce and it is a pleasure to observe them in the meanwhile.
“The important thing factor is that Sexton acquired one other nice 40 minutes and there is a variety of positives. The perfect is but to come back from this Irish workforce.”
Eire: Keenan; Hansen, Ringrose, Aki, Lowe; Sexton (capt), Murray; Porter, Kelleher, Furlong, Beirne, Ryan, O’Mahony, Van der Flier, Doris.
Replacements: Herring, Kilcoyne, Bealham, Henderson, Baird, Casey, Byrne, Henshaw.
Sin-bin: O’Mahony (40+3)
Tonga: Piutau; Taumoepeau, Fekitoa, Ahki, Kata; Havili, Pulu; Fisi’ihoi, Ngauamo, Tameifuna (capt); Lousi, Fifita; Halaifonua, Talitui, Fifita
Replacements: Moli, Koloamatangi, Apikotoa, Paea, Funaki, Vailanu, Takulula, Inisi.
Referee: Wayne Barnes
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