Saturday 17 March 2018

Kiss sure referee will be fair over 'choke tackle'

Ireland assistant coach Les Kiss refused to be drawn into a debate with Scotland coach Andy Robinson over referee Chris Pollock's interpretation of the so-called 'choke tackle'.

"There has been a little bit said by the Scots in that area, for sure," acknowledged Kiss.

"Over the last 12-18 months, teams have to analyse the way that we do defend and come up with a way to combat it. That's fine by me.

"As I've always said, we don't just rely on the choke. Even in the game against France last week, we had two critical turnovers from good chop tackles and to a normal poach situation, so we've got varying tools where we can put pressure on."

New Zealand whistler Pollock will be the man asked to keep flowing an international contest that has favoured the visitors in the past two years -- they won with a last-minute Dan Parks penalty at Croke Park in 2010 and then in the World Cup warm-up at Murrayfield last August.

"Chris Pollock is a good referee. We've done a fair bit of analysis on him," added Kiss. "He knows the rules. He will call it as he sees it. The challenge for us (is) to adapt to what he calls on the day. We have full faith that the referee will do his part in it and referee it properly."

There are other areas of concern for Ireland, who like to put numbers into the ruck and slow down ball. Southern hemisphere referees are known for their desire for a fast game.

"He likes a contest at the breakdown. That is for sure," said Kiss.

"To clear quick ball once the ball has gone to deck.

"Scotland are trying to fashion a message they would like the quick ball to come as fast as possible.

"If quick ball comes, we are happy with that too."

Let the games begin.

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