23 May, 12:21
The Irish Rugby Supporters Club is delighted to announce that tickets for the GUINNESS Series 2013 will go on sale on ticketmaster.ie at 10am on Thursday, May 30.
Head coach Pat Lam showed considerable dismay at his side's performance during Saturday's 34-22 defeat to Scotland and reserved particular attention for a lame first half.
He said: "I am so disappointed with how we started. We were 30 points down before we began to make an impression."
The Islanders team has now haemorrhaged 62 points in first halves against Wales and Scotland respectively as opposed to only 10 points in the second halves of their tour matches to date.
In offering an explanation Lam, the former Northampton captain, pointed out that players are reverting to what they know best not what they have trained for during the tour: "When we don't do what we train we look average."
Once again the team responded at the break and from then on played to the system. Lam added: "At half-time we spoke about playing super rugby. The boys did just that. But at the end of the day we can't give sides a start like that."
Following last Saturday's Test match at Murrayfield, Lam announced some players have either left camp or will do so in the next 24 hours. Saturday's first try scorer Rupeni Caucaunibuca has returned to Agen (France) for personal reasons whilst long-serving back rower Semo Sititi has flown back to Japan also for personal reasons. Isoa Domolailai has a recurring back problem and will return to Toulon in the next 24 hours.
Apart from Domolailai, medical staff have reported a clean bill of health for the entire squad. The only concern was second rower Simon Raiwalui who had X-rays on his wrist following the loss to Scotland. However the hard-working captain was given the all clear and will train all week.
Meanwhile Lam has provided a strong endorsement of the Pacific Islanders concept, in particular the notion that such a side should appear in an expanded Tri nations competition.
"That would be a terrific idea and if we had more time with these players and a greater opportunity to bring continuity to the party, I am sure that results and their displays would improve significantly."
The final game of the Islanders' Northern Hemisphere tour will see them play Ireland at Lansdowne Road next Sunday (kick-off 2.45pm). This will be the final game at the stadium before it is redeveloped and a bumper crowd is expected to say their farewells to the oldest ground in international rugby.