Rugby

We're Not Buying Joe Schmidt's Excuse For Picking Ian Madigan Over Paddy Jackson

We're Not Buying Joe Schmidt's Excuse For Picking Ian Madigan Over Paddy Jackson

Despite being in the form of his life, Paddy Jackson hasn't done enough to warrant inclusion in Joe Schmidt's matchday 23 for Ireland for the fourth time this Six Nations. Finally, Sinead Kissane stepped up and asked him - what's the deal? Why isn't wee Paddy getting some game time? He's playing out of his skin (Not a direct quote).

Schmidt's answer? (This is a direct quote):

Injuries unfortunately scuttled his opportunity, when he definitely would have got chances in Argentina a couple of years ago.

One of the things is Johnny Sexton hasn't missed a kick at goal. Ian Madigan has a phenomenal strike rate. That's one of the aspects. Another aspect is Ian's versatility. As opposed to Paddy who is mostly a ten.

If Johnny is starting and Ian Madigan offers us the versatility if we need to put someone at 12 - you can potentially put Ian there, if you need to put someone at 15 you can potentially put Ian there.

To have a guy like Paddy or Stu, who are one position guys mostly, it does just limit the flexibility of how and when you can make your changes.

So kick-rates and versatility? Except that in the last game against England, Schmidt showed that he's unwilling to actually use Madigan's versatility off the bench.

And when you look at the kicking stats for 2015/16, Paddy Jackson is in the top five in kicking percentages in the Pro 12.

Pro 12 Kickers

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As for the Champions Cup. with 25 attempts - Jackson was sixth in kicking percentage with an 88% success rate (ranks first in kickers with more than 20 attempts). Ian Madigan only took eight kicks with an 87.5% success rate. Sexton, by comparison, is down at 76.47%

So, Joe again uses the excuse of kicking percentage and versatility to have Madigan over Jackson - but that doesn't seem to hold any water.

See Also: Joe Schmidt's Excuses For Picking Madigan Over Paddy Jackson Don't Make Sense Anymore

See Also: Plenty Of Fans Will Agree With Paddy Jackson After Most Frustrating Moment Of France Defeat

Conor O'Leary
Article written by
"That's what." - She.

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