Rob Kearney is excited about following Ciarán Frawley’s international career after the youngster earned his first call-up to the Ireland squad.
Frawley was one of two uncapped players to be included in Ireland’s squad for next month’s tests against Japan, New Zealand and Argentina, alongside Leinster teammate Dan Sheehan, who have both stood out for their province recently.
The versatile backline player has mostly played at inside-centre for Leinster, but he has been behind two-time British and Irish Lions tourist Robbie Henshaw in his province’s pecking order since he made his senior debut in 2018.
Henshaw’s recent injury struggles have given Frawley opportunities for Leinster and now Ireland, and Kearney expressed his confidence in his former teammate to succeed at the highest level on Premier Sports.
Rob Kearney on Ciarán Frawley.
“I think we’re going through a period now where you’re always sort of in a little bit of a rebuilding phase. The Lions tour is just over and you’re two years out from a World Cup. Coaches realise that they’ve got to start blooding some new guys,” Kearney said.
“You’ve got a guy like Ciarán Frawley now picked for the first time in his international season, or the career that he might go on to have.
“He’s a superb player. There are very few weaknesses in his game. He’s big, he’s strong and he can take the line on. He’s a guy who I’m very excited about watching develop over the coming seasons.”
.@KearneyRob weighs in on the Ireland squad for the Autumn internationals ☘
“Coaches realise that they’ve got to start blooding some new guys.” 🗣️ pic.twitter.com/Ss97sIoYJd
— Premier Sports (@PremierSportsTV) October 22, 2021
Irish youngsters could get the chance to shine next month.
While Frawley and Sheehan are the only two uncapped players in Ireland’s squad for the autumn internationals, a further six players who won their first caps during the summer have also been included.
While none of those inexperienced players are likely to feature against the All Blacks, they may well be handed opportunities against either Japan or Argentina.
Ireland head coach Andy Farrell is far from the only international coach to include young players in his squad this autumn, with plenty of new faces set to be given opportunities ahead of the Rugby World Cup in two years.