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Ireland at the 2019 Rugby World Cup

Best: We Can’t Take Georgia For Granted

Best: We Can’t Take Georgia For Granted

Prop Simon Best says Ireland have got to treat Georgia like Six Nations opponents if they are to get the desired performance and result against the eastern Europeans on Saturday.

Best replaced Marcus Horan for the final quarter of Ireland’s 32-17 win over Namibia last weekend, having made his World Cup debut four years ago against the same opposition.

Like many of the Irish squad, the Ulster front rower watched the Argentina-Georgia game on Tuesday at the team hotel and Malkhaz Tcheishvili’s plucky side made an impression on him.

“The Georgians’ physicality certainly stood out. From the first kick-off they really tore into Argentina. It was a massive game for them, their first at this World Cup,” said Best.

“They wanted to lay down a marker to show they are very big and physical but they had a few touches in the backs. Both of their half-backs looked good. They also defended very well. Argentina had a lot of pressure on the line throughout the game but the Georgians didn’t give in.

“They were unlucky to have given up the bonus point to Argentina in the end. It’s certainly a disadvantage for Georgia to have such a quick turnaround – four days – but they will also be well up for it given it’s a very big game for them as well.”

The 29-year-old feels Georgia have the capabilities to test Ireland this weekend and the Triple Crown winners will have to be on their toes if they want to keep their Pool D hopes alive.

“I think Georgia will have taken a lot of confidence out of that performance against Argentina and I have no doubt this is a game they will want to show up well in.

“It’s obviously difficult for Georgia but somebody had to have the quick turnaround. It will test their squad but I think they showed what they are capable of the other night,” added the Poyntzpass man.

“We can’t take them for granted and rely on them being tired from a short turnaround. We have got to prepare as we would for any Six Nations game.”