Heaslip: Improvement needed against Wales
February 2, 2014
Heaslip was named man of the match for his efforts in Dublin © Getty Images
Jamie Heaslip insists Ireland will not rest on their laurels after easily dispatching Scotland 28-6 and that 'huge improvements' are needed to see off reigning champions Wales in Dublin next week.
After a nervy start Ireland took control of the game, with Andrew Trimble, Heaslip and Rob Kearney all crossing in what turned out to be a relatively straight forward opening day win. Ireland bounced back from the blow of losing captain Paul O'Connell in the build up to the game with a chest infection to kick off their 2014 Six Nations campaign in perfect style.
But Heaslip admits boss Joe Schmidt was not happy with their performance, and that the team's analysts will be working overtime to ensure Ireland can repeat their 2013 victory over Wales.
"Huge improvements will be needed for next week," Heaslip said.
"Joe had a couple of choice words for us in the changing rooms afterwards, and I'm sure there will be more on Monday night. Our poor analysts will be working on that and won't see the Super Bowl!
"It will be a huge challenge to go up against a team that's won this championship two years in a row."
Heaslip stepped into the breach as captain in O'Connell's absence and praised the way the team reacted to the late news, reserving special applause for Dan Tuohy - who started in his place in the second row.
"It was a big shock to us about Paul, we watched line-outs at seven o'clock on Saturday night with him," Heaslip said.
"Paul had given us really good direction during the week, so we had the knowledge and then we had to bring the physicality and intensity, and we managed to do that.
"It's a big shame to lose a character like Paul, a great leader and an inspiration. But credit to Dan [Tuohy] who had a great game, and will give Joe a good headache."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
West Ham have been handed a blow as Andy Carroll will miss the start of the season as he is set to undergo surgery on an ankle problem he picked up in training
Michael van Gerwen's quest to lift a maiden World Matchplay title continues as he reached the semi-finals following a 16-12 victory over Dave Chisnall
Colin Montgomerie has plenty of work to do if he is to become only the second man after Gary Player to win all three Senior majors in a season as he is seven shots off the lead at the Senior Open Championship
Nico Rosberg admits he and Lewis Hamiton are walking a "fine line" in their bid to win the world championship but still both keep Mercedes at the centre of their priorities
Kimi Raikkonen is confident he can start to reap the rewards of his recent progress with the Ferrari F14 T in Hungary this weekend after a series of disappointing results