sport

Schmidt: Room for improvement

Coach Joe Schmidt admitted Ireland were far from their best despite achieving their first series victory in Argentina.

Ireland won the second Test 23-17 to win the series 2-0 in Tucuman and with six new players blooded in the two victories, it has been a successful tour.

The Irish came back from 10-9 down at half-time into a big lead thanks to second-half tries from Simon Zebo and Ian Madigan.

The Pumas scored a consolation just before the final whistle and the scoreline flattered the hosts a little, but Schmidt saw plenty of room for improvement.

The Ireland boss said: "We've achieved an opportunity where we broaden the group a little bit, we've found out a little bit about some of those players, some who've acquitted themselves really well and some others who've still got some work to do.

"That's an achievement in itself. At the same time we know we have got a heck of a lot of work to do. There are some teams that will put us under a lot more pressure than that.

"I think, again our set-piece probably saved us. We put them under scrum pressure a few times when they had great platforms and when they did get that platform in the last play of the game we weren't able to defend it when they did get the ball in their hands, which is massively disappointing."

Schmidt will now take a break before starting his preparations for the November internationals with South Africa, Georgia and Australia.

He added: "We'll have a bit of a rest now and dust ourselves off and try and approach the Guinness Series still with a bit of positivity, because it's not that long ago that we were playing at the top of our game in the Six Nations.

"I thought today we had a really experienced spine in the team and we probably should have offered a little bit more continuity and it's probably a disappointing performance by our standards."