Ireland Captain Confirmed For This Weekend’s Autumn Nations Cup Clash With England
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Leinster second-row James Ryan will captain Ireland this weekend against England in the Autumn Nations Cup with Johnny Sexton set to miss out.
Sexton had a scan on the hamstring problem that forced him off against Wales on Friday night and has been ruled out of this weekend’s fixture.
Ryan meanwhile took over Sexton’s duties in that game and will now be given an opportunity to do that from the start for the first time in his career in a move that many people have called for in the past.
The 24-year-old has long been seen as Ireland’s long-term skipper and there’s no better place to show off your credentials than England at Twickenham
And teammate James Lowe reckons there’s no one better for the job.
“All you guys get to see is the 80 minutes of football that he plays on a Saturday,” Lowe said today.
“Last night when I was sitting in my bedroom having a cup of tea, he’s walking around, he’s knocking on people’s doors making sure everything is sorted, that everyone knew what they needed to do.
“He’s one of the main men in the pack, he runs a lot of the lineout, attack and D. Earlier on, he’d lead by his actions, but now he’s grown into himself. He’s some leader.
“He’s ridiculously mature for a lock. You would typically say you grow into a lock because a lock does all the stuff that isn’t on the stat sheet – he hits rucks, he makes tackles – but he’s got some skill-set.
“The fact that he’s only just got his driving licence baffles me because he’s mature on the rugby field. But man, don’t tell him this, but he’s a pretty unique man, that’s for sure.”