The Irish fly-half wants to play this summer and beat Australia in their own back yard.
Johnny Sexton Wants To Play This Summer, Not Rest
Ireland just won a Grand Slam, largely because of the play of Johnny Sexton, so you would think this is a good time to relax and rest the body a little bit. Add in the fact he played a pivotal role in the Lions Tour and that sentiment looks more and more attractive. Especially considering the World Cup is nearly a year away.
But the Irish ten has no intention of resting, with the summer tour of Australia being of particular importance for the fly-half.
“As a player you want to play, I want to play for Ireland as many times as I can and the same with Leinster,” Sexton said.
“We are very well looked after in Ireland and one of the biggest reasons in coming back to Ireland was to be under that IRFU umbrella. I want to play as many games and if I’m fit, I definitely want to go.”
The tour of Australia has huge significance, as a series win in the southern hemisphere does wonders to a teams confidence.
A series victory would give the Irish the impetus to go and achieve their goals in the World Cup, taking place in Japan a few months later.
“When you are thinking about the World Cup in a few years time you want to tick as many boxes as you can to give yourself confidence going into it,” he said.
“We can beat teams at home but you don’t get a home game in a World Cup and we have to know that we can beat these big teams away from home too.
“Leading into a World Cup it is important to tick boxes along the way and beating Australia away from home would definitely be one of those so I would be mad keen on going.”
Other players who have had hectic summers and Six Nations campaigns are Conor Murray and Tadhg Furlong, with some people calling for them to be rested. However, as you can see above, while a large number of Tests players who ply their trade in England and France are being put out on the paddock again this weekend, some of the Irish Grand Slam heroes are getting their R&R in.
But at the end of the day, the decision rests with Joe Schmidt, and the World Cup is clearly the focus. Ireland are an underachieving side in the tournament, never getting past the quarter-finals. If their best players have to be rested, Schmidt will undoubtedly do what is necessary.
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