Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

England's Sheridan can roar like a Lion: Rowntree

Andrew Sheridan has been urged to underline his Lions credentials with another "colossal" performance when England lock horns with Ireland at Croke Park.

The giant Sale prop impressed England and Lions scrum coach Graham Rowntree with a lung-bursting, all-action display against Wales.

Sheridan played with the kind of bite and energy at the Millennium Stadium that often undermines his case to be considered the world's most fearsome loose-head prop.

There have also been concerns about Sheridan's consistency, but Rowntree has highlighted how important his role will in the hostile surroundings of Croke Park.

"Against Wales it was a straight Lions trial with him and Gethin Jenkins," said Rowntree.

"Andrew has come along in the last few weeks. His work rate is colossal and I don't use that word lightly, along with the rest of our front five.

"He will be judged because of the man he is and the size he is with what he does in the scrum.

"The Irish front row of Marcus Horan, Jerry Flannery and John Hayes — the Munster outfit — are a handful.

"They are all improved players. I am a big fan of Flannery and they are all contenders for that Lions trip."

Sheridan will be among the first names jotted down on the teamsheet when Rowntree and the other England coaches finalise their selection.

The selection was delayed 24 hours to give England time to "experiment."

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