Ronan O'Gara's verdict on the idea of starting Sexton and Farrell together

Ireland and Munster legend considers what has been mooted in some quarters

Ronan O'Gara, Softco,

Pictured Ronan O’Gara ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Ronan O'Gara does not think starting Jonathan Sexton and Owen Farrell together in the first British and Irish Lions test against the New Zealand is the way to go.

The idea of starting the two out halves in the same team, with Farrell at 12 has been mooted in some quarters.

But speaking to Off The Ball's Nathan Murphy at the launch of the SoftCo foundation, O'Gara feels it's more likely that only one will start.

"I don't think you can start with the two of them in the test team against New Zealand," he said.

"I think it's a very good option after 50 minutes, having two ball players but for me, the two of them are 10s and the two of them are class players and I think there's little between them.

"But I think if I was picking the team, I'd have one of them at 10 and have someone else in the centre. I think Robbie Henshaw's performance for Ireland in Chicago might give him an advantage. He hasn't shone on this tour yet. He's had two games, two losses and from his point of view, it's not great.

"I think Ben Te'o is an impact player. Who's going to play 13? Jonathan Davies, Jonathan Joseph. The problem for me at the minute is it's impossible to name the Lions midfield, which I don't think is a good thing. The one back who would look a definite is George North on the wing. Every other position seems - bar Conor Murray will start 9 and I would have thought the Farrell would definitely play 10 or 12 - so you probably have three players max nailed on."

 SoftCo, the leading finance automation software provider, with the help of ambassadors Dan Carter and Ronan O’Gara, officially launched the SoftCo Foundation at a star-studded gala dinner in Dun Laoghaire Golf Club where more than €150,000 was raised for charity and a further €100,000 committed for ongoing Cancer Research. The Foundation has selected three charities to partner with for 2017; CMRF Crumlin, The Irish Injured Jockeys Fund and Guys Cancer, London. Visit for more information