Opening half Jonathan Sexton is taking nothing for granted about his selection in the International Fall Series as he is set to make a century of appearances for Ireland next month. Sexton was a controversial omission from the British and Irish Lions squad which lost their streak to South Africa earlier this year, and have struggled intermittently with head injuries especially in recent times.
But he’s back in great shape and working on a return to the test arena for the first time since the Six Nations in March. Ireland face Japan in Dublin on November 6, ahead of games against New Zealand and Argentina on consecutive weekends.
“It’s always exciting to come to the international camp, you have the same feeling every year. When that goes, it’s time for you to end,” Sexton told reporters on Tuesday. âI haven’t been perfect with my injury profile lately, but I’m feeling good right now. I took a hiatus over the summer and then came back with Leinster.
“I’m just looking forward to the (fall) series. There are a lot of new players in the Ireland squad and it’s exciting.” It seems likely he will make his 100th test appearance for his country, with six in a Lions jersey, but Sexton believes that is not a given, especially with his recent concussion issues.
âIf I am chosen it will be a special day, when you have your first selection at the age of 24, you never think that you will reach 100,â he said. “But I’ve learned over the last year that you can never look too far. I need to go out and train and get back into the team.”
The prospect of a clash with New Zealand in a full Aviva stadium in Dublin is particularly enticing. âIt’s going to be the same thing you always get when you play against the All Blacks, it’s about testing yourself against the number one team in the world more often than not.
“We’ve had some great performances since (coach) Andy Farrell came in, but we need consistency and do two or three performances in a row, which we haven’t done,” he said. he declares.
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