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Larmour is eager to cement his grip on No.15 jersey



Flying high: Jordan Larmour is finally getting a run of games

Flying high: Jordan Larmour is finally getting a run of games

�INPHO/Gary Carr

Flying high: Jordan Larmour is finally getting a run of games

Everywhere you look, it seems, the international rugby team and its followers - at least those invested in the players, rather than the palaver - are caught between the past and the present, the old and the new.

Clinging certainties are being challenged from all sides by the symbols of revitalising renewal; from Leinster's eager back-rows sniping at dogged Munster men 'o war to the bristling rivalries at half-back.

Jordan Larmour has also been cast within the spotlight; he projects a mighty glare himself, we are told, in contrast to Rob Kearney.

The perceived wisdom now is that Larmour represents a 2020 vision brimming with intent; Kearney a blinkered vision dimming with lament.

Joe Schmidt, we now know, constantly bounced between the need to accelerate the future but was so fretful about the present that the past remained his closest confidante; and time his greatest enemy.

Likewise, Andy Farrell hasn't got a limitless supply of the stuff; and judging by the often hysterical reactions to his debut Test win, there isn't much patience flowing his way either.

His faith in Larmour at full-back, however, remains unbowed; after all, we have seen this boy do wondrous things against Italy in Chicago and Scotland in Yokohama but on each subsequent selection find himself, once again, riding pine behind his fabled colleague.

"It's the same as at Leinster, you have a lot of competition," said Larmour. "It's just different guys breathing down your neck, so it's important that you keep playing well to keep your spot."

Nobody should ever feel safe, of course; however, just as it seemed that his field positioning and high-fielding were arguably at their most assured last Saturday, it seems fitting that he has decisively spurned all arguments and secured his hold on the No.15 jersey.

"There is always disappointment when you get dropped," he said. "You get dropped and it is not a nice feeling and leaves you second-guessing, 'Was this the right thing to do?'

"But ultimately you put all of your trust into the coaches. You get disappointed but you have to move on.

"Any time you get selected you grow a bit in confidence, so you need those games to keep improving. Playing matches; that's what really gets you selected and dropped."

So too familiarity; Irish outside backs have regularly been so exalted with praise that it is presumed they could, or should, excel in every three-quarter position. Larmour has not escaped the versatility virus.

"I've played 15 most of the season, I'm working hard at being a 15 and the outside noise, I don't listen to it," he said. "Sometimes you might get the odd game on the wing, then you might have three in a row at full-back.

"But when you get a run of games in the same position it definitely helps. Playing the same position week in, week out will make you a better player."

Belfast Telegraph