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Thursday 24 January 2019

No stopping Frawley as he continues to catch the eye

TALENT: Ciaran Frawley. Photo: Sportsfile
TALENT: Ciaran Frawley. Photo: Sportsfile

Is Ciaran Frawley Leinster's sleeper?

A sleeper is something or someone who succeeds when no-one thought it possible.

The Dubliner worked his way into the Leinster academy, impressing with his attitude and versatility to thrive halfway through year two.

When the list of year one academy members was released for last season, Frawley would have been the least well-publicised and well-known among the general rugby public.

Tight-head Jack Aungier, back five forward Oisin Dowling, hooker Ronan Kelleher, centre Gavin Mullin, wing Tommy O'Brien and scrum-half Hugh O'Sullivan had all been heavily touted from their Schools Cup profiles.

The Skerries native made his latest impression when seamlessly slipping into full-back for Leinster against Connacht just before half-time for injured full-back Hugo Keenan.

"He's played a little bit at 15, but that's not the way he would have prepped during the week," said coach Leo Cullen.

"It was another option to shift around the backline but we put Ciaran in at 15.

"He's been training well, he's going well and that's another example.

"It's a positive step for Ciaran Frawley to play 42/43 minutes at 15 in a high-pressure game."

It would seem Frawley has the cool-headed temperament to carry out the game plan, even in an unfamiliar position.

The 21-year-old has earned seven caps already and has made both of his starts at out-half, while dabbling at inside centre and full-back in his five appearances from the bench.

"There's plenty of positives even though it's probably not the way we set it out," said Cullen.

"Some guys will benefit from the exposure and the experience.

"It's just how we improve and get better in the next opportunity, whenever that may be, for individuals."

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