Gordon D'Arcy has called on Irish rugby bosses to conduct an anonymous review among the Ireland squad to find out the root causes of the latest World Cup failure.
That, says the ex-Leinster and Ireland centre, would be the only way to discover how a team heralded as the Irish side best prepared to break the quarter-final hoodoo performed so poorly in Japan, where they suffered a first loss to the hosts, and a record defeat to New Zealand.
D’Arcy was part of the 2007 and 2011 World Cup squads and says that reviews similar to ones carried out then would not suffice.
"We will never fully know what went wrong," D’Arcy wrote in the Irish Times.
"I say this because I don’t remember a full review [after 2007 and 2011].
"There was an email, a quick survey, but nothing deep-rooted and more importantly anonymous; an opportunity to provide insight about the coaching set-up to ensure our employers avoided making the same mistakes.
"There is an opportunity to offer the Irish players an independent, unbiased and anonymous review to know with certainty what went wrong.
"I’m not holding my breath this will happen but seeking the opinions of Rory Best right down to Jordan Larmour about how they saw events from January to now should be the IRFU’s primary duty before [new head coach] Andy Farrell formally takes over.
"Physically the players are looked after better than any other nations but psychologically something went awry."
Ireland's next game is at home to Scotland in their opening match of the Six Nations on 1 February.
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