ESPN SCRUM

/ Six Nations 2014

/ News

France v Ireland
Leamy questions Ireland's Leinster reliance
ESPN Staff
March 14, 2014
Denis Leamy in action for Ireland, before injury forced him to retire © Getty Images
Enlarge

Denis Leamy has questioned Joe Schmidt's Ireland selection policy saying the coach is relying to heavily on players from his old province Leinster.

Leamy, a former Munster and Ireland stalwart, questioned the decision to drop Paddy Jackson from the squad for Saturday's Six Nations crunch match against France. Former Leinster coach Schmidt has called in Ian Madigan as cover for Jonathan Sexton in Paris, leaving Jackson out of the match-day 23.

Writing in the Irish Independent, Leamy said: "I think what rankles with Munster people - and I suspect some folk in Ulster- is that guys who aren't first choice in Leinster are still good enough for the national squad.

"I would have to disagree with some of the calls. Tommy O'Donnell lost his place on the bench, I think he is a better player than Jordi Murphy.

"I would argue that Donnacha Ryan brings more to the table than Rhys Ruddock and you just have to wonder what Simon Zebo - a Lion last summer - has to do to get back into the squad. Paddy Jackson has a more rounded game at the moment than Ian Madigan.

"The World Cup is just a year and a half away. The circle will need to be widened and not having done that in the Six Nations narrows the opportunities."

Ireland are in a three-way shoot-out with England and France for the Six Nations title. All three sides go into tomorrow with a chance of winning the championship, but Ireland have the advantage of a superior points difference over their title rivals.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

Live Sports

Communication error please reload the page.

  • Latest
  • Most Viewed
  • News
  • Features
  • Rugby

    Super Rugby preview, team news, line-ups: Round 4

    Greg Growden previews Super Rugby round 4. We've also got key stats, team news and all the line-ups as they are named to inform your ESPN Footytips Super Rugby picks

  • Rugby

    Read, Nadolo in Crusaders' development side

    All Blacks No.8 Kieran Read and Fijian star Nemani Nadolo have been named in the Crusaders' development side as they prepare to make their Super Rugby returns

  • Football

    'Grown men acting like a couple of children'

    Sunderland manager Gus Poyet says he has "no regrets whatsoever" after being sent off during his side's draw at Hull, while counterpart Steve Bruce admitted they had both acted like "a couple of children" following a touchline altercation

  • Football

    I'll try anything to avoid the drop, admits Sherwood

    Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood admitted he will "try anything" to steer the club clear of relegation from the Premier League following his side's narrow victory against rivals West Brom

  • Rugby

    Etzebeth, Burger bolster undefeated Stormers

    Eben Etzebeth has been cleared to make his return for the Stormers this weekend while Schalk Burger could also face the Sharks after finishing up in Japan

  • News
  • Features
Sponsored Links
Make Huge Income from your Home
Download your Free Guide And Learn How To Increase Your Monthly Income