Ireland’s players are “hurting” after their Six Nations defeat to England, but Peter O’Mahony says they must not overreact to Saturday’s setback.
Joe Schmidt’s men, Grand Slam winners in 2018 and victors against New Zealand in November, suffered a first home Six Nations loss in six years as they were beaten 32-20 by England at the Aviva Stadium.
Addressing reporters on Monday, O’Mahony made it clear Ireland’s pride had been dented, while outlining the team’s desire to bounce back when they face Scotland at Murrayfield this weekend.
“We’re hurting,” said the experienced flanker. “The Aviva is obviously a place where we haven’t lost in a while.
“You never like losing, whether you’re playing for Ireland or your club, but particularly at the Aviva. It’s somewhere we’ve made a fortress and certainly that hurts, but the beauty of our job is luckily you can get back out … and have an opportunity to put that right.
“We can’t be hanging around feeling sorry for ourselves. We’ve got to take our review on the chin, dust ourselves off and get stuck into the week, because there’s a lot of rugby to be played between now and the end of the campaign.”
O’Mahony gave credit to England, adding: “You know you’re coming up against some of the best individuals in the world and when they fire they’re difficult to stop.”
Peter O’Mahony: It hurts to lose at home but we take it on the chin. We can’t sit around feeling sorry for ourselves. pic.twitter.com/zAHC2TTSj0
— Irish Rugby (@IrishRugby) February 4, 2019
Having achieved so much success in recent years, Ireland will not be making drastic changes to their approach.
“We’ve got to get back to the things that we do well,” explained O’Mahony. We’re certainly not going to throw all the game plan out of the window and start fresh. We’ve built a squad and a game plan for a long, long time now and we certainly won’t be going away from it. We just need to realise how important the stuff that we do well is for our game.
“I don’t know why we would be panicking. We’ve been sitting here for a long time now and it’s been all positive, this and that.
“It’s one loss. We were up against one of the best teams in the world. We’re certainly not going to shy away from it, it hurts, but we’re going to go back to what we do well and we’re going to do that excellently, hopefully, this week.”
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