NZ Journalist Spots Massive Conor Murray Flaw & It Could Be An Issue

Conor Murray was outstanding on Saturday against the Crusaders.

The Ireland nine came in for his first start of the tour, having only come back from injury in the last few weeks. Murray picked up a shoulder problem a couple of months ago while on Ireland duty, that kept him out for a lot longer than initially expected.

He was arguably the best player on the pitch against the Crusaders, but a New Zealand journalist has spotted something that a lot of other people also noticed on Saturday.

Murray’s shoulder problem is still causing him a bit of discomfort and it was plain to see as he struggled with a number of passes off his left hand.

In his Stuff column, Mark Reason writes:

‘The biggest bother for the Lions was Murray’s passing off his left hand. On three separate occasions in the first half he gave the ball back to the Crusaders with awful passes. It may be a legacy of the shoulder injury Murray suffered towards the end of the Six Nations, but the Lions need to sort it out quickly.
‘Murray is now probably the best kicking and defensive halfback in the world, but the Lions cannot afford him to pass as poorly as this. On a night when there were so many positives for Gatland, it will probably be his biggest area of concern.’

What was initially thought to be nothing more than a stinger, ended up being nerve damage for Murray that at one stage cast his fitness for the tour in doubt.

If we take a closer look at some of his passes thanks to some clips via SportsJoe, we can see the massive difference in his passing of each side, due to the injury.

Right hand

Left hand

It’s clear Murray still isn’t right as this happened on a number of occasions, only off his left. It does however, make his performance on the day even more remarkable. The problem is it leaves us with two massive concerns ahead of the first Test with the All Blacks.

  1. Murray will not get away with throwing stray passes like that off his bad side against the All Blacks.
  2. What if the injury gets worse and Murray isn’t passed fit for the first Test?

It’s a huge concern for Gatland. Hopefully Murray can get himself right for the first Test, because lord knows he will be needed.

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