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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 February 2006, 15:42 GMT
Clockwatch: Ireland 26-16 Italy
All the action as Ireland beat Italy in the Six Nations opener at Lansdowne Road.

80 mins: The final whistle sounds to Ireland's relief. The hosts have got their Six Nations campaign off to a winning start but they were given a far harder game by Italy than expected.

75 mins: PENALTY Ireland 26-16 Italy
Ireland are awarded a penalty after some pushing and shoving and O'Gara pushes play deep into the Italy half.

The hosts immediately earn another penalty and O'Gara takes his time before drilling the kick over to give Ireland what must be a winning 10-point margin.

73 mins: Ireland are penalised at a ruck but Pez pulls his kick wide of the posts.

70 mins: Italy launch an incisive attack down the Irish left but the visitors are penalised for accidental offside just a few metres from the line and Ireland clear their lines.

64 mins: PENALTY Ireland 23-16 Italy
An O'Gara penalty restores Ireland's seven-point advantage.

60 mins: PENALTY Ireland 20-16 Italy
Italy come back at Ireland yet again as Pez slots a penalty awarded when Ireland infringe at a scrum.

Both sides make substitutions with Donncha O'Callaghan replacing Malcolm O'Kelly for Ireland in the second row and Aaron Persico entering the fray in place of Mauro Bergamasco for Italy on the open-side flank.

58 mins: PENALTY Ireland 20-13 Italy
The Ireland backs suddenly find space in midfield. Gordon D'Arcy cuts through twice in two minutes, with his second break earning a very kickable penalty.

O'Gara does his best to miss it but the ball sneaks home off the right-hand upright to edge the hosts further ahead.

55 mins: Ireland are showing signs of getting on top, although whenever they move the ball wide the Italy defence is proving very hard to break down.

47 mins: TRY Ireland 17-13 Italy
Ireland take the lead in controversial fashion. Bowe latches onto O'Gara's cross kick but is tackled as he crosses the line and although referee Dave Pearson gives the try, TV replays suggest Bowe was unable to touch the ball down as he was enveloped by the Italian defence.

O'Gara converts to give Ireland a lead they do not really deserve.

41 min: PENALTY Ireland 10-13 Italy
Italy win a penalty early in the second half and the visitors kick it deep to earn good field position in the Irish half. They then win another penalty and launch a sustained attack on the hosts' line.

Ireland hold out but concede another penalty and back-up kicker Paul Griffen strokes the ball between the posts to put Italy back into the lead.

Half-time: The scores may be level but Italy will be much the happier of the two sides. Ireland have tried to play a wide game but have not found much penetration yet.

Italy have played a more expansive game than expected and have controlled the match for long periods, with their pack leading the way.

38 mins: PENALTY IRELAND 10-10 ITALY
This time it is the Irish fans making the noise as Pez is sin-binned for a late tackle, reducing Italy to 14 men for 10 minutes. O'Gara slots the penalty to level the scores with half-time just round the corner.

36 mins: Cries of "Italia, Italia" ring round Lansdowne Road in Dublin as the visitors revel in their team's lead.

27 mins: TRY Ireland 7-10 Italy
Italy hit back immediately with a sharp try from Mirco Bergamasco, who scoots over after a fine midfield break by Pez, who also converts the sore.

24 mins: TRY Ireland 7-3 Italy
Ireland attack across the width of the pitch and although Horgan is bundled into touch a yard out, Ireland steal the resultant line-out and Flannery is driven over by the Irish pack. O'Gara converts to put the Lansdowne Road crowd in good voice.

21 mins: Italy captain Marco Bortolami flattens Ireland full-back Geordan Murphy with a beautifully-timed tackle as Ireland try to spread the ball wide.

But the Irish do not go into their shells and a superb pass puts Murphy in the clear a minute later. He draws the full-back and feeds Bowe but the winger is caught by Canale, who pulls off a marvellous tackle to halt the flying Ulster winger.

16 mins: The crowd finally gets a chance to make some noise as Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll goes on a charge and earns a kickable penalty in front of the posts, albeit a long way back on the Italian 10-metre line.

However, O'Gara pushes it wide and the hosts have yet to get on the scoreboard.

11 mins: PENALTY Ireland 0-3 Italy
Shane Horgan concedes a penalty in the Irish 22 for failing to release the ball in a tackle and Pez slots the kick to put Italy into the lead.

6 mins: The match has started in a frenetic fashion with Italy spreading the ball wide at every opportunity. Ireland have yet to establish a platform, although O'Gara kicks a penalty deep into Italian territory to give the hosts an attacking chance.

However, inexperienced hooker Jerry Flannery overthrows and Italy counter attack once more, securing good field position.

3 mins: Ireland counter-attack and win a penalty which Ronan O'Gara kicks to the wing, but Tommy Bowe cannot gather it and the chance passes.

2 mins: Italy launch the first attack of the game, with Gonzalo Canale breaking through midfield before being hauled down by the Irish defence.

1 min: Italy fly-half Ramiro Pez starts the match and Ireland clear their lines, giving Italy the first throw-in of the match.

1331 GMT: The anthems are over and the two teams prepare to get the 2006 Six Nations underway.

1327 GMT: The teams are introduced to Irish President Mary McAleese before the two anthems.

1323 GMT: Ireland are led out by talismanic captain Brian O'Driscoll to a ground-shaking roar from the fervent home support.

1321 GMT: Italy run out onto the famous Lansdowne Road pitch to a fanfare from the military band.


Ireland: Murphy; S Horgan, O'Driscoll (capt), D'Arcy, Bowe; O'Gara, Stringer; Horan, Flannery, Hayes, O'Kelly, O'Connell, Easterby, Wallace, Leamy.
Replacements: R Best, S Best, O'Callaghan, O'Connor, Reddan, Humphreys, Trimble.

Italy: Stoica; Canavosio, Canale, Mirco Bergamasco, Nitoglia; Pez, Griffen; Perugini, Ongaro, Nieto, Dellape, Bortolami (capt), Sole, Mauro Bergamasco, Parisse.
Replacements: Festuccia, Lo Cicero, Castrogiovanni, Del Fava, Persico, Picone, Wakarua.

Referee: Dave Pearson (RFU).




WATCH AND LISTEN
Highlights: Ireland v Italy


Interview: Ireland coach Eddie O'Sullivan


Interview: Ireland's Paul O'Connell



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