Conor Murray On The Two Lions Players He Can’t Wait To Work With
Not long to go now.
Conor Murray’s place on the plane to New Zealand was beginning to look like it may be in serious doubt over the last few weeks. The Munster and Ireland scrumhalf has been battling with a nerve issue, that he admits had him seriously worried.
Head coach Warren Gatland warned that Murray must play some rugby before he jets off, despite being the favourite for the Test nine berth. It now seems Gatland will get his wish, with Murray back in full training. He’s in line to return for Munster’s PRO12 semi-final, but could even play a part this weekend against Connacht.
This summer will be Murray’s second Lions tour, having travelled as third choice last time round. His performance’s however didn’t go unnoticed, managing to push his way onto the bench by the 2nd Test, and coming close to taking Mike Phillips’ Test jersey for the third.
Murray says he doesn’t know where he stands this summer, but is certainly better equipped than he was in 2013.
“I have no idea where I stand that way, but I can just speak of my experiences over the last four years – I’ve definitely grown and I’ve definitely got better as a player,” says Murray.
“Mentally, I think I’m better equipped to handle these types of situations. I’m definitely in a better place than I was four years ago, but that’s not to say you’re going to get into the team. The competition is definitely red hot.
I really respect the other two lads. Genuinely, I think they’re really good players so hopefully that will bring the best out in myself. It’s going to be whoever Warren and Rob and the lads prefer, or whoever is playing better and that’s the way it should be.”
On the two players he’s excited to work with this year, Murray name drops England lock Maro Itoje, “just to see him up close and what he’s like as a person and what he’s like at training” and Wales flier Liam Williams, “he’s had a massive couple of years and is a really good fella.”
The immediate focus for Murray however, is getting back on the pitch and trying to grab some silverware with Munster to cap off an amazing season for the province,.