Sunday 17 December 2017

O'Gara all fired up in race for 10

RONAN O'GARA says he is relishing the battle for the Irish No 10 jersey as the race between the Munster star and his Leinster counterpart, Jonathan Sexton, picks up pace ahead of the autumn internationals.

"I've a huge battle for the number 10 jersey but that's the way it is," said O'Gara who will win his 100th cap if he plays against world champions South Africa on November 6.

"All I can do is control my performances and mental state and my own game. I haven't been as motivated in a long time. I had a great pre-season, the season started really well and I'm delighted with the consistency of the performance.

"I'm excited by the challenge of trying to get on the team and doing well for Ireland, and that's the key point. I've always been a big believer that if the team is going well, the out-half is going well and that's exactly the case going forward whether I start or come off the bench."

Meanwhile, Marcus Horan faces six weeks on the sidelines after suffering a broken wrist in a gym accident. The international prop will now be unavailable for any of Munster's Magners League games up to the end of November and will also be ruled out of four autumn internationals (v South Africa, Samoa, New Zealand and Argentina.

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