Lions Coach Says He Spoke To Sexton About Poor Performance & Backs Him To Bounce Back

Lions assistant coach Rob Howley has revealed he has chatted to Johnny Sexton on more than one occasion since his poor showing against the Provincial Barbarians.

Sexton was completely off the mark for the majority of the game and nowhere near his usual best. He was substituted after just 48 minutes, with his replacement Owen Farrell making an instant impact, setting up the match-winning score.

Howley has revealed that he spoke to the Irish playmaker on two occasions since, with Sexton admitting his performances haven’t been up to scratch, with the Lions coach branding him as ‘inconsistent.’

“I spoke to Johnny on Sunday and Monday,” Howley said ahead of the Blues fixture.

“The way the game mapped out we played a lot of rugby in terms of our attacking kicking game. That’s a challenge first up. You go in with a bare minimum and the tools which we had. We can only work on those elements over the last couple of weeks.

“It was tough for Johnny but he’s a world class No 10. I suppose the word is inconsistent. I spoke to Johnny and he admitted it.

“There’s an honesty between coaches and players. He’ll bounce back. He’s a world class No 10 and don’t underestimate his influence in 2013. He’s a very intelligent rugby player.”

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