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Last Updated: Friday, 14 September 2007, 11:16 GMT 12:16 UK
Geordan Murphy Q&A
Geordan Murphy
Geordan Murphy
Ireland full-back/wing

Geordan Murphy will be on the bench for Ireland's second World Cup game against Georgia on Saturday. He took time out from his preparations to answer some of your questions.

Q: Do you agree with Keith Wood, who suggested that the 'lesser' teams should not play against the top teams because of the danger aspect of semi-professional players meeting head on against fully trained professionals?
Darryl, 33, Nottinghamshire

It is a difficult argument. I suppose teams like Namibia and Georgia in our group are really keen to give it to us and are relishing the chance to play against the top sides. It would be difficult to tell them that they are not able to do so.

The other sides of the argument though would be Max Brito, the Ivory Coast winger who broke his neck in the last World Cup. For a team like Portugal, they will be playing the All Blacks. It is a huge game for these guys. It is a dream for them to be playing against the All Blacks and who is to say they should not.

Q: Our best chance of success has to be to avoid the All Blacks in the quarters, so therefore we need to beat the French. Would there be an argument for playing a really loose fast broken game, like the second half in Paris in the Six Nations, to negate a potentially more dominant pack?
Ed, 34, Downpatrick

Yes, there is an argument for that but I do not think you can play a whole game like that. If is comes off that is great but it is a risk to play the Sevens type of game. It is about trying to find a combination. You have to try to find a parity up front. If you do not get quality ball you are going to struggle.

Q: I know you did a stint at school in Auckland when you were in Newbridge College. Did you play with any of current All Blacks when in school in NZ?
James, 26, Dublin

Yes, Dougie Howlett was in the same school as us so I know him from being down there. He is the only one, some other guys came through afterwards and I did not know them.

Q: In a previous Q&A, you said that Donncha O'Callaghan and Simon Easterby are the big jokers in the squad, with Simon jumping out of cupboards and the like.

However in a recent interview Donncha said that it was you that has the track record for jumping out of cupboards, particularly to scare Shaggy (Shane Horgan). Could you clear this one up for us as I think it is a crucial point!
Stuart Monro, 35, Glasgow

It all started out as an accident. When I scared Shaggy that first time, he squealed, fell to his knees and started crying. I frightened him by mistake but it has become a bit of a running joke and now quite a few people are jumping out of wardrobes and from around corners so you have to keep you wits about you. If you let your guard down you are in trouble.

Q: A World Cup comes around every four years and could be the last time a number of players will play in it, how do you prepare yourself mentally to perform to the best of your ability?
Colm, 23, Galway

It is a huge stage and everyone wants to do well. You have to prepare like you do for any other game. You have to prepare mentally for any match in international rugby. You realise it might be your only shot to play in a World Cup so it is all about enjoying it and doing the right things

Q: Seeing as you play your club rugby in the United Kingdom, would you agree that the management should look at more players in the UK who can play for Ireland, for example Bob Casey and Nick Kennedy, and not let good players like Shane Geraghty and Kieran Roche escape through the net and declare for other countries?
Chris, 40, London

Obviously you are a London Irish fan. All those players are great players. There are some fantastic second rowers in the squad but I know from playing against Bob and the other guys they still have a lot to offer. Eddie has always said he is trying to pick a home-based team so those of us playing outside Ireland know the risk of not getting picked and I think it is something most of us are all right with.

Q: I am going to both potential Ireland quarter-finals (hedging my bets!) and I am looking forward to seeing you play in one of them. If you do end up playing the All Blacks in Cardiff, what do you think is your most effective way of taking them out?

Also, as a Leinster supporter, do you think that sometime in the future we might see you in the blue of Leinster, or indeed the colours of any of the Irish provinces?
David, 34, London

If we meet the All Blacks we must learn some big lessons from the last two times we played them in New Zealand. The style we adopted then served us well and we were in both games until the last five or 10 minutes. It was just in those last few minutes that maybe our concentration let us down.

I have just signed an extension to my contract at Leicester so there is no chance of me playing anywhere else in the immediate future unless they sack me.

Q: Ireland have struggled historically against Argentina, the 1999 World Cup being a prime example and also your first experience probably being Buenos Aires in 1997 if I'm not mistaken. What is the game plan for that key last pool game??
Steve, 29, London

If we had a game plan sorted already I could not put it on the internet. Argentina are a quality side and beating France was a real eye-opener for everyone.

They are a committed rugby nation who have gone from strength to strength in recent years and that is the reason we have had tough battles against them. It is a big game for us and hopefully it will go our way.

Q: Good luck for the coming weeks. I assume you will have Fields of Athenry ringing in your ears on the pitch, but what music will be playing in the team bus and the dressing room?
Dan, 32, London

There is no music in the dressing room. It is left to the individual if they want to listen to something on their iPod. As for the bus, we actually have a music committee. All the players have their preferences and the committee gleans bits and pieces from them to make a playlist.

Q: Firstly, best of luck from one Lilywhite to another. After playing football for Kildare, have you any desire to cross codes and have another crack at the roundball? And do you think having played football, does it give you any advantages when on the rugby pitch?
Marcus, 24, Kildare

It definitely does. I did not start playing rugby until I was 13 and I played Gaelic football until I was 18. Footwork and the ability to catch and kick a ball are all great things you can take across from Gaelic football to rugby. It is a sport I really enjoyed playing and I would love to think that at some stage in the future I could play it again. You cannot when you are playing professional sport but when I finish I might have a go again at a junior level.

Q: If you could pick any player in world rugby past or present to play in your team, who would you pick and why?
Michael, 19, Dublin

There are many great players I would like to have played against. I always admired David Campese when I was younger for his skill and attitude to playing. Serge Blanco was another one, he was a fantastic full-back but that might stick me on the wing so he might not get in. Richard McCaw is probably one of the best players in the world. I would probably go for some player in the past. David Campese or one of the flying Welshmen of the 70s. I would plump for Campese.

SEE ALSO
Ireland v Namibia
09 Sep 07 |  Irish
Geordan Murphy Q&A
07 Sep 07 |  Irish
Geordan Murphy's column
04 Sep 07 |  Irish


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