herald

Thursday 17 August 2017

Carbery: I'm happy to play my part

Fergus McFadden (centre) celebrates with Joey Carbery
(left) and Robbie Henshaw after scoring Leinster’s fourth try.
Fergus McFadden (centre) celebrates with Joey Carbery (left) and Robbie Henshaw after scoring Leinster’s fourth try.

The story goes that Graham Henry pointed to a slight figure and sagely announced: 'you can build the team around him.'

It would seem Leinster will have to build from the back, should Joey Carbery stay there.

The multi-skilled playmaker is one of those mercurial talents who listens to the voices of experience and learns from his mistakes.

When Carbery was performing with optimum grace and efficiency against Glasgow Warriors in the PRO12 at the start of the season, one long arrow was picked off by Tommy Seymour as Leinster lost their hold at Scotstoun.

The Athy man never lost his way.

For all the beauties he has thrown, like the one that allowed Isa Nacewa to get outside Christian Wade, there have been many more triggers he has not pulled.

The rush to anoint Carbery as Jonathan Sexton's natural successor has been tempered by the advance of Ross Byrne and the stop-start season of Rob Kearney.

"At the moment, I'm just kind of playing there with injuries. I love just being on the pitch," he said.

The decision to take on quicksilver Joe Simpson ended with the try that gave Wasps hope.

He made a mental note and left it at that.

"You've got to move on because, if you let it affect you, the rest of your performance is going to go down."

The man doesn't do flustered.

"It makes my job a lot easier when the team performs really well," he said.

"As a whole, I thought we played really well and dealt with their threats."

It makes Leinster's mission manifestly more manageable when Carbery performs that well.

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