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Dublin: 4 °C Tuesday 19 February, 2019

'If I was Larmour I'd be a little bit worried not getting a run at fullback this weekend'

Former Ireland head coach Eddie O’Sullivan discussed Will Addison’s inclusion in the team to face the USA on this week’s Heineken Rugby Weekly.

Larmour and Addison.
Larmour and Addison.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

HAVING IMPRESSED AT outside centre in the win over Argentina, Will Addison has been handed the opportunity to show Joe Schmidt what he can do at fullback this weekend. 

The Ulster back starts against the USA at the Aviva Stadium tomorrow, while Jordan Larmour has returned to Leinster after featuring in the first three games of the November series.

Larmour scored a stunning hat-trick of tries against Italy in Chicago but showed some inexperience in the victory over Argentina, and ex-Ireland head coach Eddie O’Sullivan sees the 21-year-old’s omission as an interesting call.  

“The one that sticks out for me is Will Addison at 15,” said O’Sullivan, speaking on this week’s episode of Heineken Rugby Weekly.

“What does that mean for Jordan Larmour now? Going to Chicago, we thought Larmour was the back-up fullback. He had a great time in Chicago, but it didn’t go well against Argentina.

“Maybe, if Joe Schmidt sees him as the back-up fullback, he probably would have given him a run and a chance to redeem himself this weekend. 

But he’s gone with Addison and I think that’s interesting. If I was Larmour, I’d be a little bit worried that I didn’t get a run at fullback this weekend, just to see if he could pick up where he left off in the Italy game and maybe fix some of the things that went array for him against Argentina. 

“It doesn’t seem like that’s the way it’s going for him and that’s a concern, I’d say.” 

Ireland insist Larmour is not injured, but The42‘s Murray Kinsella suggests he might have picked up a knock and sees tomorrow’s Test as a big chance for Addison to stake his claim as the second-choice fullback behind Rob Kearney. 

“I certainly think he [Larmour] is going to be part of the squad and he has established himself there,” added Kinsella, “but it’s interesting that he went back to Leinster and when we asked [Ireland skills and kicking coach] Richie Murphy if there was an injury there, he said he was a little big beaten up without indicating an injury. 

“I wouldn’t be surprised if there is something there, but I guess it’s a massive opportunity for Addison. The thing with him and we mentioned it before, he is 26 and he has a lot of experience. It’s not like he has come in as a fresh youngster. 

Obviously, he has to learn a lot about how Ireland function but he’s really experienced — over 100 caps for Sale and he has club-captained them as well. It’s almost like he was the next one in that depth chart anyway, but he has just suddenly appeared on the radar. 

“I don’t think it’s a big step for him to adapt into Ireland’s systems and Joe Schmidt’s demands. I think you’ve seen him do that really well and he’s been a really good addition. How he performs is going to be really interesting. 


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Source: Heineken Rugby Weekly on The42/SoundCloud

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