Friday 15 December 2017

Ruddock called up for O'Mahony

Rhys Ruddock has been called into the Ireland squad
Rhys Ruddock has been called into the Ireland squad

France coach Philippe Saint-Andre has joined the call to cite Sean O'Brien for his swinging arm into Pascal Pape.

The incident was first shown towards the end of Ireland's breathless win over the French.

However, the incident occurred right at the start of it.

"It was an attack after 23 seconds. I hope the TMO will do their job next time," said Saint-Andre.

"Usually you go back to the footage. I have the feeling they did not do that this time."

Rhys Ruddock has been called up to the Ireland Rugby World Cup squad in place of the injured Peter O'Mahony.

This is a triumph of perseverance over pain as the 24 year-old looked all set to lay down a serious challenge to O'Mahony from his performances in last November's internationals.

Then, a fracture to his forearm was initially assessed as a 6-week problem. The cruel outcome was a second break to the same arm within six months to rule him out of Ireland's pre-season camp.

Ruddock goes where Jack Conan could have.

In fact, Conan made a positive impression on the Irish management out in Carton House this summer to come closer than he could have dreamed to making the final cut.

Fate took a horrid hand ten days ago when Conan rolled his ankle in the warm-up before the PRO12 League encounter against The Dragons.

This meant Ruddock was pressed into emergency service from the bench for his first start of the season.

He lasted the full eighty minutes in a true testimony to his conditioning and athletic engine.

This was probably the difference between staying at home and going to the World Cup with Conan not fully recovered from his injury.

Ruddock could very well be the first of three new faces in light of Jared Payne's departure to recover from a broken bone in his foot and the imminent heartbreaking news about Paul O'Connell's hamstring.

Dan Tuohy would appear the best option with Andrew Trimble, Fergus McFadden or Felix Jones in line to take Payne's place.

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