Classic Rugby International Wins for Wales Against Ireland
The Wales vs Ireland Six Nations fixture has grown in intensity in recent years. Whether that is because of the Warren Gatland association or the closely contested Guinness Pro 12 is unclear. Nevertheless, Friday night’s fixture will undoubtedly be feisty.
Wales approach Friday’s Six Nations test match on the back of two consecutive defeats. In contract, Ireland have bounced back with two victories after losing in Scotland. There is pressure on the Wales team and coaching staff. This is heralded as a must-win test match, but aren’t they all?
So, we look back, at some great Wales victories in the modern era.
Wales 32 Ireland 20, Six Nations, Millennium Stadium, 19th March 2005
Mike Rudduck had masterminded a brilliant Six Nations and on the final weekend of the 2005 season, Wales had a chance to secure their first Grand Slam since 1978. The atmosphere in the whole of Wales was electric and, for the first time in decades, the Welsh rugby faithful believed.
Wales had not beaten Ireland in the previous five attempts. Only 3 years previously, Ireland had hammered Wales 54-10 in Dublin. This wasn’t going to be easy.
Gethin Jenkins helped calm the nerves, charging down a Ronan O’Gara kick before side footing and then falling on the ball to score the opening try. Wales lead by 16-6 at the break.
When Kevin Morgan scored the 2nd try to put Wales 29-6 up, we all thought that it was all over. But no. Back came Ireland, with tries from Marcus Horan and Geordan Murphy. However, the magnificent Stephen Jones had kept the point ticking over finishing with 16 points.
And then the whole of Wales celebrated their 9th Grand Slam, 18th Triple Crown and 23rd title. An incredible day!
Wales 22 Ireland 10, Rugby World Cup, Regional Stadium,Wellington, New Zealand, 8th October 2011.
It was the quarter finals of the 2011 Rugby World Cup. Ireland were the favorites after winning all 4 pool games, including a 15-6 win against Australia.
In front of over 35,000 fans, Wales ran in 3 tries to Ireland’s 1. Shane Williams scored after only 3 minutes to help Wales secure a 10-3 lead at half -time. After the break, Ireland came right back into the game with a Keith Earls try. But there was no stopping the Wales team of 2011.
On 51 minutes, Mike Phillips made a blindside break to score a vital try. 13 minutes later the dominance of the Welsh team saw Jonathan Davies collect a poor kick, fend off Cian Healey and burst through to score a try.
Ireland fought to the bitter end, but Wales held out and marched onto the infamous semi-final against France.
Wales 23 Ireland 21, Six Nations, Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Ireland, 5th February 2012
In a classic encounter, Wales staged a thrilling comeback to open the 2012 Six Nations campaign with a victory. Two tries from Jonathan Davies and one from George North with only 4 minutes to play, were enough to beat the Irish on their home turf.
At half-time, Ireland led 10-5 and travelling fans were left wondering whether their exploits in the 2011 World Cup were just a distant memory. They need not have worried.
In the second half, Wales played with width and depth. Ronan O’Gara kept the Irish in touch and they led until a 79th minute tip tackle from Stephen Ferris gave Leigh Halfpenny the chance to win the game.
Wales went on to win the championship and secure their 11th Grand Slam.
Rugby Hospitality with Matthew Rees
Prior to the Wales vs Ireland Six Nations test on Friday, Cardiff Blues hooker Matthew Rees will be our guest speaker at a pre-match hospitality dinner (Radisson Blue Hotel , Cardiff). He will be giving his views on Wales performances in 2017, and also talk about which Welsh and Irish players may be flying out to New Zealand with the British & Irish Lions in the summer.
For more information or to book a place at the Pre-Match hospitality event with Matthew Rees, please contact Paul Fielding on:
Phone: 01656 782252 or 07768 418308
By email on: legends@