Looking ahead to this weekends rugby international, Ben Khavia, is a transition year student from Loreto Community School who is currently on work experience with the Donegal Democrat think Ireland will be looking for victory in November test series opener.
Ben, who is a keen rugby supporter and player with Letterkenny RUFC under-17 team, has done a match preview ahead of Saturdays Ireland vs Samoa game:
The recently appointed Joe Schmidt will be faced with his first major test since taking the helm of coaching the Irish national team in the coming weeks. His side will be under pressure from the hopeful fans and media to have a successful November test series. Ireland will have to face three extremelly challenging fixtures during the series with the first game against Samoa kicking off this Saturday at 5.45pm. Ireland are expecting a good result from the opening test series however it is certain that the visitors will put up a fight.
Samoa, currently ranked 7th in the IRB world rankings, are one place above Ireland following a good string of results in the past year. Samoa have never really been considered as a team in the ‘top 10’ so they will be going out with a point to prove against Ireland and a cracking 80 minutes of rugby is expected. Joe Schmidt has appointed second row, Paul O’Connell, as captain for the test series however vice-captain Jamie Heaslip will lead out the Irish team on Saturday due to O’Connell’s injury.
A strong team has been named with national hero Brian O’Driscoll back to full fitness and starts as outside centre. Ireland and Leinster fullback, Rob Kearney addressed the media during the build-up of the game. “We’ve got to make sure we produce the brand of rugby that people expect from this team, and that we start to fulfill our potential more, unlike the last year,” explained the full-back. “There’s a new feel to the squad now, and we can aim to move forward with it.”
There is a sense of hope for the Irish fans with a fresh start, following a disappointing few years in the Six Nations.