Following Ireland’s loss in the Rugby World Cup quarter-final, many fans don’t have it in them to continue watching the tournament.
One of those people is Irish Independent Columnist Ian O’Doherty, who said he started watching with “hope more than expectations” for the Irish team.
“Irish fans were being very incredulous when they said we were going to get to the semi-final,” he told The Hard Shoulder.
“We were playing the All Blacks – the better team won.
“It was the fact that the lineups didn't work, we butchered a bunch of scrims, kicking out of the hands was reminiscent of the last years of the Joe Schmidt era.”
Despite that, Mr O’Doherty said the better teams don’t always win a match and Ireland should have taken their chance.
“I would have preferred to be beaten by 20 points,” he said.
“This was this was our greatest chance - as a lot of people have been saying before the match, ‘If not now, when?’.
“My heart just goes out to the players - I wouldn't say any of them have slept a wink since.”
Mr O’Doherty said it’s hard to have optimism for the future of the Irish team.
“I don’t think I’ll watch another match this tournament,” he said.
Newstalk Presenter Sinéad Ryan said she was of “two minds” whether she wants to continue watching the tournament after Ireland’s exit.
“This was the moment, and this was the team, that could have broken that curse,” she said.
“It just didn’t come to pass, and I don’t think you can lay any blame at any of the team’s feet.
“You certainly can’t blame Andy Farrell.
“Anybody who had fingernails left after those 30 or 35 phases in the last few minutes, they had no heart.”
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