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Wednesday 18 October 2017

Mike Ross: I took a lot of confidence from England game

10 March 2015; Ireland's Mike Ross arrives for squad training. Carton House, Maynooth, Co. Kildare. Picture credit: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE
10 March 2015; Ireland's Mike Ross arrives for squad training. Carton House, Maynooth, Co. Kildare. Picture credit: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE

Ireland's anchorman Mike Ross has taken a lot of confidence from the way he dealt with England's Joe Marler.

It wasn't that long ago that the Cork man was being readied for the scrapheap, losing out to Harlequin' Marler in their set-to in The Champions Cup and, subsequently, falling in behind Marty Moore and Tadhg Furlong at Leinster.

"You've got a plan for it. The plan paid off. We executed it and the scrum wasn't a factor in the game," he said.

The road keeps on rising as the veteran moves on to combat three-tour British & Irish Lions 34-year-old Gethin Jenkins, another man closer to the finish than the start of his career.

"You see, he mixes up what he does. He's a very experienced campaigner. He has 117 caps or something like that so he has a lot of arrows in his armoury."

Ross will leave it up to referee Wayne Barnes to examine what is happening at the scrum. He just wants a fair fight in what will be a hostile atmosphere.

"You always hope that if you're keeping a legal shape and your opponent doesn't, then the ref picks up on that.

"But it can be a difficult job for the referee to pick up on everything, so sometimes breaks don't always go your way."

There have been times when he has tested referees knowledge of what is going in the dark arts. He has tried to stay away from engaging in skulduggery.

"The percentage move is to stay straight," he said.

And his percentages have been good enough to keep Moore at bay.

Ireland Scrum

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