Ireland head coach Adam Griggs said a blistering first half in Cardiff has injected huge confidence throughout his side as they turn their attention to next weekend's Six Nations showdown with France in Dublin.

Ireland had played just one competitive match in 14 months going into their championship opener against Wales on Saturday afternoon but they showed little signs of ring rust in a powerful first 40 minutes. 

They were 31-0 up at half-time having run in five tries but the second period was a messy, disjointed affair for the most part until Dorothy Wall and Hannah Tyrrell plundered a couple of more tries in the last eight minutes.

Griggs accepted Ireland will need to iron out some errors against the French – who thumped Wales 53-0 last week – but he saw more than enough to make him believe his charges can make life difficult for their fancied opponents at Donnybrook. 

"It was a game of two halves, that old cliche, but I think in that first half you saw maybe some of the frustration of not playing for so long come out," he said. 

"We were really clinical in some of those parts. The pleasing thing is a lot of those things that came off we worked hard on in training.

"We spoke about it before this game, putting in a performance that showed all the hard work we've done so far so I was really pleased by that.

"We've worked really hard the last couple of years to build a competitiveness in this group. This group had the responsibility this week and for the most part everyone performed really well."

On the second-half display, Griggs added: "It's one of those things, you can fall into a bit of a trap when you get early tries. You can get such a lead that you can overplay at times.

"I think we were probably a little bit guilty of that. Some of our core skills that looked so sharp in the first half let us down. From a coaching group perspective though, it's a good thing that you've got really positive clips to show them but at the same time there's plenty we can work on.

"We know that France will bring a different challenge. The confidence in the group is really sky high after that."

Tyrrell was awarded the player of the match award after a stellar showing at out-half. It's a position that's proven quite problematic for Ireland, with no one really making the jersey their own, but Tyrrell – an accomplished Gaelic footballer and soccer player – put her hand up on Saturday with a confident, classy showing.

"It's been no secret we've been looking to nail down that 10 position," said Griggs.

"Hannah has that natural eye for the game and I know she's got that GAA background with the boot which really helps us as well. She can put it long when she needs to, we saw some really nice delicate grubbers through as well.

"That's her building confidence and her game understanding, really playing heads-up rugby. The beauty of her as well is we were able to shift her to the wing and then at full-back when Eimear [Considine] went down with cramp. She's got that versatility as well which is key."