Josh Van Der Flier believes he has come to be the man to watch considering that getting named Globe Player of the Year as he appears to celebrate his 50th cap for Ireland with Grand Slam glory.
Flanker Van Der Flier won the worldwide person award on the back of a stellar 2022 and continued his fine kind to assist place his nation on the brink of the Guinness Six Nations.
The 29-year-old will make a landmark Test look in Saturday’s Dublin clash with England and believes his current promotion has brought him additional consideration on the pitch.
“I guess there had been absolutely a couple of occasions in games exactly where I got the ball and located 3 guys on me exactly where I believed I’d have a small bit additional space,” Van Der Flier mentioned.
“Perhaps that is not the case and it really is all in my head, but there is absolutely been a couple of occasions exactly where I felt like an individual enjoyed hitting me or anything.”
Asked if there was any taunting from opposition players in the game, he replied: “Not seriously, fortunately – additional guys in my group if I make a error!
“(There had been) (not) also quite a few modifications. But I guess I absolutely come across that carrying the ball, for instance, I am a small bit additional marked, I guess. But that leaves space for other people today.”
Van Der Flier will appear to make up for the disappointment of Ireland’s injury-hit Grand Slam against England at Twickenham 2018 this weekend.
He demonstrated his very first group mentality in the course of final weekend’s chaotic 22-7 round 4 win in Scotland by throwing lines just after the loss of Dan Sheehan and Ronan Kelleher.
Andy Farrell has joked that the backline forward will replace captain Jonny Sexton as the team’s goalkeeper against Steve Borthwick’s side.
“It will be a pretty unique day,” Van Der Flier mentioned. “Fifty drops, it flew by fairly quickly.
“In my head I attempt not to believe also a great deal about it I sort of acknowledge that that is it, I guess, as nicely as certainly the value of the large game that it is and what is at stake.
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“I’m not going to be also concerned about that type of person issue (50 games), the issue we’ve all been functioning towards is to win trophies for Ireland and large games for Ireland, so that is absolutely a large concentrate.
Will Connors, pictured, has threatened to take Josh Van Der Flier’s spot for club and nation (Marco Iacobucci/PA)
Van Der Flier was in danger of falling behind his Leinster group-mate Will Connors in the pecking order for club and nation a couple of years ago.
The quantity seven overcame that threat to create into a important player for Ireland, earning praise from his head coach.
“Wow, what a couple of years for Josh,” Farrell mentioned. “Going back to his story, it really is all simply because of competitors for Leinster and Ireland locations – Will Connors coming on the scene, and so forth.
“Josh was 1 of the guys who raised his hand, talked to himself and mentioned, ‘this is up to me.’
“Considering the fact that he’s completed that, he’s under no circumstances looked back and he deserves all the credit simply because he’s extremely hardworking as far as preparation goes.”
“The way he attacks just about every game is phenomenal to watch.”