Looking ahead to Ireland's second test against England in the Junior World Cup tomorrow, Munster and UL Bohemian out-half JJ Hanrahan outlined that small margins are crucial against the top-tier nations.
"The difference between winning and losing a game at this level is on a knife-edge, and that was certainly the case in our pool match against England eight days ago. We let our intensity dip in the second half and England took full advantage."
Munster Academy player and Kerry native Hanrahan made and impressive start to the tournament with his man of the match performance during Ireland’s 23-19 win over South Africia and is confident his side have what it takes to overcome the six nations champions.
"We need to look after our own individual performances for the entirely of the match, and I am in no doubt that the team performance will come as we are a tight-knit squad."
The contact area proved to be crucial during Ireland’s pool stage narrow loss to England in the Stellenbosch mud-bath and Hanrahan emphasized the importance of this facet of the game as well as individual defence.
"Our main priorities throughout the tournament have been the contact area, both in attack and defence with a low tackle focus. We performed this well for the first 50 minutes against England last time but know we have to put in an 80-minute performance tomorrow”.
"The ground is immaculate condition, and with the weather forecast looking good, we are all looking forward to an exciting game."
The match will take place at the University of Western Cape at 4pm Irish time. The winner will go into a play-off for the 5th and 6th place, while the defeated side will battle it out for the 7th and 8th championship spot.