Ireland right to put their feet up after heavy schedule

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Heavy autumn: Chris Robshaw played all four Tests for England Photo: PA

Countries should look at longer-term cost of a fourth autumn Test

When you pose the question as to which of the home nations is in the best shape after the autumn internationals, the obvious answer is Ireland. And that is not just in terms of results – unbeaten against South Africa Africa, and Australia – but also in terms of the physical well-being of their players.
Ireland played just 10 Tests this year (with two of them against Argentina, as well as that match against Georgia). England played 12, including four against New Zealand. Wales played 11 including three against South Africa. Scotland also played 12, including four summer Tests. Both New Zealand and Australia played 14, while South Africa played 13.
Yes, Ireland had some high-profile absentees this autumn like Sean O’Brien, Cian Healy and Chris Henry, but last weekend while the players of England and Wales were pushing their bodies through a fourth consecutive Test, most of Ireland’s players were putting their feet up before the rush back into European action……… see more at :-

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