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'I'd like to think that I have a lot more to give' - Leinster's Larmour looking up

The 20-year-old will travel to Australia but hopes to finish his Leinster season with another medal.

JORDAN LARMOUR WILL celebrate his 21st birthday in Australia on 10 June, the day after the first Test against the Wallabies.

While some young people planning for their 21st might be making a list of booze to stock up on, Larmour will likely be reviewing analysis clips as Ireland make their way from Brisbane to Melbourne.

Jordan Larmour Larmour has had a dream season with Leinster and Ireland. Source: Gary Carr/INPHO

There will surely be a celebratory cake at some point in the day, but the highly-ambitious and focused Leinster man won’t be getting too distracted.

Before he heads away with Joe Schmidt’s squad next week, Larmour has business to finish in his first season with Leinster’s senior team.

He has already featured 21 times for the province during this campaign, starting 13 games, including the Champions Cup final. On Saturday, he will be part of the squad aiming to complete a historic double by beating Scarlets in the Guinness Pro14 decider at the Aviva Stadium.

“It’s a dream come true to be playing for Leinster and then to be winning for Leinster,” says Larmour of these heady times.

At the start of the season, I didn’t think I’d be here so I’m delighted with how it’s gone so far and it would be nice to send the boys who are leaving off with another piece of silverware.

“The amount of work we’ve put in and if we lost on Saturday, it would be the worst thing. Isa [Nacewa], Richardt [Strauss] and Jordi [Murphy] are leaving, so we really want to send them off on a high.”

A strong performance against the Scarlets may be enough to convince Schmidt that Larmour is ready for his first start for Ireland – although clearly the head coach already believes in the youngster.

All of Larmour’s caps so far have been off the bench, so a first start on the three-Test tour of Australia would allow him to continue his incredibly swift rise.

Jordan Larmour, Andrew Porter and Bundee Aki celebrate winning Larmour with Andrew Porter and Bundee Aki after the Grand Slam success. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

Jacob Stockdale and Keith Earls head into the tour as Schmidt’s first-choice wing pairing, while Rob Kearney has the same status at fullback, but there may be room for giving Larmour increased exposure.

Even if Larmour says he is happy with how his career is unfolding, his competitive streak will mean he wants a bigger taste of Test rugby.

“I couldn’t have dreamed of it,” says Larmour. “To be involved in two great teams and in two great environments, there is so much competition and that brings out the best in you. Hopefully, I can keep it going.

“I’d like to think that I have a lot more to give and if I keep getting the opportunities, hopefully, I can take those opportunities.”

The hype around Larmour has died away somewhat in recent times, something that the 20-year-old has probably welcomed.

It was his sensational try against Munster in Thomond Park at Christmas that truly kicked off that hype, with his call-up to the Ireland squad for the Six Nations only adding to the anticipation.

He was harshly criticised in the wake of one defensive error against Italy during the Grand Slam run, while expectations that tries like that one against Munster would come regularly were unrealistic.

Indeed, while his footwork is always a weapon, the most impressive aspects of Larmour’s performances in recent weeks have been the less glamorous duties like rucking, chasing kicks, tackling and positioning in defence.

“You’re still learning and you’re going to make mistakes, but it’s how you learn from those mistakes,” says Larmour.

Jordan Larmour breaks to score a try Larmour scored a sensational try against Munster. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

“Teams are going to study you more, how you play, so you’re not going to be scoring tries like that [against Munster] every week. So it’s just any time I get the ball or I need to do something on the pitch, I just want to do it to the best of my ability and help the team.”

It is worth underlining that Larmour has still scored seven tries in the Pro14 for Leinster this season, in what has been an incredible first campaign for province and country.

Asked what he puts his rise down to, Larmour doesn’t hesitate.

“It’s just hard work. It starts in the sub-academy and going into the academy, just putting all the work in – doing extras, your gym sessions. Once you get your opportunity, you have to take it. I would put it down to hard work.”

As he strives to continue to improve as a player, Larmour feels there is nowhere better he could be than at Leinster, where there are mentors everywhere.

“When I came in at the start, Rob Kearney came up to me and said, ‘If you want to go through any video or anything like that, just come and chat to me,’” explains Larmour.

“Then you see the likes of Isa, how he is with everyone and how he’s such a humble guy and hard as nails, so that rubs off on you as well.

“There have been loads of really good people to learn from and it’s a great environment to be in.”

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Murray Kinsella

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