Joe Schmidt hands Byrne and Ca...

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Joe Schmidt hands Byrne and Carty the chance to impress against England


Ireland head-coach Joe Schmidt says it makes sense to give game time to both Ross Byrne and Jack Carty in Saturday's Rugby World Cup warm-up match against England.

Leinster out-half Byrne will be starting for his country for the the first time in the game at Twickenham - as he looks to press a claim to make the squad for the tournament in Japan.

Johnny Sexton is again rested entirely with Connacht's Jack Carty among the replacements and Schmidt says they're managing the world player of the year's workload:

"Johnny, he's fine, but he missed a bit of time with his thumb so he's a little bit behind and we know how well he plays for us, we don't feel that he needs a lot of time with the experience that he's got.

"So, for us, the guys that need the time are probably Ross and Jack and they've got the opportunity to do that this weekend, that they'll share a bit of time, I'd say, in the middle.

"Yeah they were always really important because it is such a specialist position, but they probably wouldn't have had this opportunity as much.

"Joey, especially on the back of his 50 minutes against Italy, I thought he was as good as I've seen him. I thought he controlled the game really well, he's always a threat individually running and carrying the ball, but I just thought his control of the game was very, very good.

"So for him the frustration is not being able to get that opportunity to continue that, it's probably a frustration for us as well but it's somebody else's opportunity and I know that Ross has trained well this week and is very, very motivated to do the job for us on Saturday.”

"He's trained really well and it's not his debut, he's had time with us before so that we've got a lot of confidence in him anyway and I think he built his way through the season," Schmidt said of Byrne getting his first start in green.

"I thought he was maybe not as impressive as Jack early in the last season, and I think those two have become really important to us".

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