Ireland & Leinster Set To Clash Heads Over Johnny Sexton
Ireland & Leinster look set to clash heads over Johnny Sexton.
Joe Schmidt and the IRFU are said to be in favour of giving the playmaker an extended break so he can fully heal up following a series of injuries over the last couple of seasons.
Leinster have said they will do what’s in the best interest of Sexton’s health but seem to have contradicted themselves by stating that they hope to have him back playing in time for their Champions Cup clash in a couple of weeks time.
“At this moment in time, from my understanding, he’s not available for this weekend against Dragons,” said Leinster backs coach Girvan Dempsey.
“Depending on him meeting the criteria and ticking the boxes of his return-to-play stuff for next week, we’re hopeful that he will be back on the field and, potentially, in line for selection for Northampton.”
There is agreement that the health of the Leinster and Irish outhalf is paramount, but there also appears to be room, not for the first time, for potential conflict between national and provincial interests.
Dempsey added that Leinster head coach Leo Cullen will meet with Ireland boss Joe Schmidt to discuss the best course of action.
“Look, Johnny’s situation is being monitored. He’s receiving advice from our medical department in conjunction with the IRFU. He’s undergoing a rehab programme.
“I’d imagine discussions will take place, potentially, between Leo and Joe about the best course of action.”
We can imagine that discussion will be an entertaining one.