Rugby The day after and not a ‘good craic’ for Ireland at RWC

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KOBE, Japan (AP) — The Irish apparently have a saying for it: Minus craic. A night out that is unenjoyable and the opposite of the world-renowned ‘good craic.’

For instance, Saturday night in Shizuoka was ‘minus craic’ for the Ireland team at the Rugby World Cup.

Ireland has had some good times recently, arriving at the Rugby World Cup as the top-ranked team in the world — the first time the Irish have been No. 1 — and dispatching Six Nations rival Scotland clinically 27-3 in its opening game.

That was all upended Saturday night by an unexpected loss to host Japan.

The Irish squad arrived in Kobe on Sunday for its next game with a rugby hangover. The subdued fans who followed the team on the Hikari bullet train carried the real hangovers, they said. But sore heads emanating from a night of consolatory consumption, not the usual Irish festivity.

Ireland’s loss puts all sorts of things into the players’ heads. A quarterfinal place is not assured, let alone a first Rugby World Cup title, which Ireland had dared to consider. Qualifyin

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