REACTION: Kennedy hails defensive effort

24 October 2017

London Irish boss Nick Kennedy says his side’s resounding 44-7 triumph in Paris was built on a solid defensive display.

Organised, compact and resilient, Irish restricted Stade Français to just one try which was garnered while Exiles’ Ben Meehan was sin-binned. 

“Defence wins games and I was very pleased with the effort and work rate in that department,” said Kennedy.

“Everyone knew their roles and they showed great discipline to stick to the task.”

The Exiles were 24-7 up at the break and were put under severe pressure from their Parisian hosts in the first 20 minutes of the second half.

“There was a period after half-time when Stade were inside our 22 for a considerable amount of time, but we stood firm and showed real character,” said Kennedy.

“It was vitally important that we didn’t concede at that stage as the hostile French crowd would have really had their tails up.”

Repelling a flurry of French attacks, Irish punctured Stade’s defensive line with three tries of their own through Lovejoy Chawatama, Ben Ransom and Scott Steele to push home their advantage.

The first half saw Conor Gilsenan and Ben Meehan cross the try line with Topsy Ojo dotting down for two tries on his record breaking 281st appearance, with Kennedy hailing the one club man.

“Topsy is a London Irish legend and he’s given his absolute best in every game that he’s played,” said Kennedy.

“He led by example on Saturday night and inspired everyone around him to step up their game and record a great win in Paris.”

With under 13s £1 throughout the stadium and adults from only £15, join us for London Irish v Bath Rugby in the Anglo-Welsh Cup at 3pm on Saturday 4 November. For tickets: www.lidirect.co.uk or call 0118 968 1016.  

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