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Ryan to lead Ireland

James Ryan at an Ireland training session in February. INPHO/DAN SHERIDAN

James Ryan looks in line to captain the Irish rugby team as early as November after current skipper Jonathan Sexton revealed that his appointment was only slated to be for one campaign. With Ireland’s summer tour to Australia now set to be abandoned, Andy Farrell’s team may not play again until the November internationals, depending on when the Six Nations can be resumed. Although Sexton’s captaincy was only due to last for one campaign it remains to be seen whether the coach will seek to rigidly commit to this theory in the midst of such a disrupted sporting year. It likely that, if a resumption of international rugby is possible this November, Sexton would remain in situ before his Leinster colleague is appointed ahead of the 2021 Six Nations, with the long-term plan clearly being for the second-row to captain Ireland at the 2023 World Cup in France.

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-- Sean Creedon