Warren Gatland’s century game with Wales didn’t go to plan, with his charges suffering a 37-27 defeat to Ireland in their Six Nations clash at the Aviva Stadium.
Five tries were enough to secure a crucial bonus-point win for Ireland, which effectively ends Wales’s championship hopes following two defeats from their opening three encounters.
Gatland and Irish rugby have endured a fractured relationship as of late to say the least, but the Wales boss pointed to instances of ill-discipline when asked what ultimately cost his side, and said that while his team were much more expansive than Ireland, Joe Schmidt’s side were excellent in the opposing 22, as well as offering a hasty apology for his previous comments on Ireland’s style of play:
“They were very strong in our own 22. Ireland are very accurate, when they get into your 22 they’re clinical. They’re a tough team to break down,” he told Wales Online.
Gatland: I apologise to Joe if I upset him a couple of years ago.
I thought they were outstanding in attack.
— The42.ie Rugby (@rugby_ie) February 24, 2018
In typical fashion, however, Gatland could not leave it at that when it came to his thoughts on Ireland, and when quizzed by a reporter on his thoughts on a potential championship decider between Ireland and England at Twickenham, the New Zealander offered a blunt and honest response:
Gatland asked how he sees England v Ireland going.
‘I don’t care.’
— Murray Kinsella (@Murray_Kinsella) February 24, 2018
Next up for Ireland is a test with Scotland, while Wales will hope to end the Championship strongly with tests against Italy and France.
Wales are out of contention now, and for Gatland – despite being impressed with Ireland today – he seemingly has little interest how the rest of the championship pans out.
Jordan Norris, Pundit Arena