So Sunday’s afternoon fixture was a brutal, breathless affair and, despite being 13-0 at one stage, I feel a draw was a fair outcome for a game which, overall, felt pretty evenly matched. Call me an optimist, but I’d go as far as to suggest Wales emerged slightly better off, considering it was one of only two away games, and against an Ireland side who I’d expect to be title contenders.
There were, however, a couple of concerns to emerge post-match. I can’t help but feel – on paper at least – our Wales team was stronger than the team Ireland put out for their championship opener. There was some experimentation of selection amongst both ranks, but Wales’ team arguably had a more familiar look to it. Therefore, I feel a win in Dublin should have seemed within reach.
It was, of course, hugely disappointing to see Dan Biggar leave the field so early on. I’m a huge fan, and I’m quickly running out of superlatives to underline his mercurial talents. Personally, I feel that Wales missed the sense of direction he brings to the team following his premature departure. Priestland’s workman-like performance surely answered some of his doubters and (frankly harsh) critics, but Biggar is without question Wales’ number-one Number ten. Providing he returns against Scotland this Saturday, I feel we can get our Six Nations campaign back on track.