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Monday 5 December 2016

'If Johnny Sexton was studying, he would have avoid being stabbed outside nightclub,' reveals former lecturer

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A former lecturer of Johnny Sexton has joked about how the Irish hero could have avoided a nasty incident outside a nightclub in 2007 in which he received a stab injury - if he had been studying instead.

The rugby ace was socialising with pals at a Rathmines nightclub when he was stabbed with a scissors by a young woman on October 26, 2007.

Ciara Byrne (20), from Darley's Terrace, Donore Avenue, Dublin, was charged with assaulting Sexton, Darragh Fanning and Michael Finley outside Tramco nightclub.

The young player was making a name for himself at Leinster when the incident happened.

Lecturer Niamh Brennan taught Sexton while he was studying for a Bachelor of Commerce at UCD.

Ms Brennan was less than sympathetic when Sexton arrived into her lecture on the Monday after the assault with an injured leg.

"His discomfort was added to by his professor telling him that if he'd been in on Saturday night studying for his accounting mid-term, as he should have been, this would not have happened," she joked on RTE's Marian Finucane radio show.

Ms Brennan acknowledged that Sexton might not have found the joke as funny as she did.

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Teaching the former St Mary's College player was her "little rugby claim to fame", she told Finucane.

Last year, Sexton's Leinster team-mate Darragh Fanning spoke out about the incident, which he said he has since watched back on CCTV footage.

The friends were trying to break up a fight after leaving the club, he said.

Fanning suffered a punctured lung during the incident.

"A couple of the lads got slashed, luckily not too badly, but I just managed to catch it straight on and it punctured my lung," he said.

"At the time it felt like I'd been hit with a hammer, or an unbelievable punch.

"I was probably not quite with it, in shock."

The woman responsible was given 240 hours' community service and a fine to avoid a jail term.

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