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Dublin: 6 °C Thursday 13 December, 2018

Chris Henry: 'I hope Joe knows I've done a job for him in the past and I'm still there'

Ireland’s head coach places huge value in familiarity when picking squads and Henry hopes to prove himself fit for Twickenham this Sunday.

IRELAND AND ULSTER openside Chris Henry is hoping that his past performances can help him play a part Ireland’s remaining Six Nations fixtures.

The ‘number 7′ played in all five of Ireland’s Rugby World Cup fixtures last year and was a key member of Joe Schmidt’s first Six Nations victory in 2014.

Chris Henry Source: James Crombie/INPHO

However, Henry was one of 11 players who were ruled out of contention for this year’s Six Nations opener through injury, a shoulder complaint sidelining the 31-year-old until last Friday night.

Now though, with Sean O’Brien ruled out of 27 February clash with England, Henry is hoping a Pro12 start against Scarlets on Sunday (KO 14.30) can ‘battle-harden’ him just in time to be considered to take the openside at Twickenham. He knows the competition for Schmidt’s favour will be considerable though.

“I don’t know how long Sean is going to be out for, but if there’s a thing about Joe Schmidt, he rewards people who he trusts that haven’t let him down,” Henry told BBC yesterday.

Tommy O’Donnell hasn’t let Joe down and Rhys Ruddock hasn’t let Joe down, but I hope that he knows I’ve done a job for him in the past and I’m still there.

“It would be an amazing feeling to get back involved with Ireland at some stage.”

He added:  ”It’s been a frustrating enough injury, one that has lingered, and now I have to try and get as much game-time as I can.

“I’m not battle hardened. In my position, you need to be in the mix and have those bumps and bruises.

“You can’t just throw yourself back in but I’d love to think Joe is watching the game on Sunday.”

Source: The42 Six Nations Show/SoundCloud

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Sean Farrell

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