Jordan Larmour: Ireland aren't over-reliant on Johnny Sexton

Larmour, like every pro rugby player, looks in serious shape as rugby's restart approaches
Jordan Larmour: Ireland aren't over-reliant on Johnny Sexton
Energia has launched the first of a two-part social documentary series with their ambassador Jordan Larmour, called The Power Behind Jordan Larmour - A Rollercoaster Season

Jordan Larmour isn't a fan of the theory that Ireland are too reliant on Jonathan Sexton.

It's a train of thought that has been knocking about for at least four years now, though it tends to be far more prominent at times when the side is not at its absolute best, and Andy Farrell was never going to rubber-stamp it when quizzed about it last December.

World player of the year in 2018, Sexton has endured tougher times in the green jersey since, his last action being a frankly miserable afternoon at Twickenham in late February when he struggled with his kicking and his passing and played a part in the hosts' first try.

“He is a class act and a class player and sometimes it is on all of us to help out our nines and tens,” said Larmour yesterday. “We've done a good job. I don't think that (over-reliance) would be really fair to say. There are a lot of other things that we can do better to keep improving as a team.

“You learn that through games and playing with each other and combinations and stuff. You work all that stuff out. We have been training and preparing well, we just fell a bit short on the day so it is back to the drawing board to see where we can improve. I do think we were improving.” 

The wins over Scotland and Wales that preceded the English loss and the pandemic did certainly suggest that some issues had been addressed but talk about the need for a second playmaker has been topical even before the disaster that was the team's World Cup campaign in Japan.

Garry Ringrose, uncertain of his place approaching that tournament, has been mentioned as a possible option in that regard and Larmour spoke with Leinster senior coach Stuart Lancaster on his return from Asia about stepping into the line more from full-back.

The 23-year-old's progress has been captured in a new two-part Energia documentary, 'The Power Behind Jordan Larmour', which charts his 2019 campaign and the period up to and including the shutdown and he is ready now to continue his education on the pitch.

“In training, you can always work on different things. Stepping up and playing first or second receiver, you can do that in training no bother. Just set there first and make a call. It's definitely something I have been working on in training.

“It's a bit different when you are playing first and second receiver when you are out on the wing or out on the outside channels. It's definitely a skill that I need to keep working on and the best way to do that is in training.” 

Larmour, like every pro rugby player, looks in serious shape as rugby's restart approaches here in Ireland with the meeting of Leinster and Munster on Saturday week though he maintains that any perceived increase in bulk is minimal.

“Not like Bryson DeChambeau,” as he puts it.

A long, punishing, but potentially profitable season lies ahead with both club and country and, if everything falls into place, maybe with the British and Irish Lions with whom he could yet tour next summer given his skills and versatility across the back three.

If that's a goal it's one he's keeping to himself for now.

"I haven't really thought about it too much. At the moment I'm just focusing on getting back to rugby and I want to put my best foot forward, to go out and play well, get a few good games under my belt. So that's really the focus I have at the moment, just getting back onto the pitch, really.”

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