'He can be a top-quality inter...
Rugby

'He can be a top-quality international player' | Quinlan on Ronan Kelleher

Eoin Harte
Eoin Harte

02:24 11 Nov 2019

Alan Quinlan was on Monday’s OTB AM and praised young Leinster hooker Ronan Kelleher after impressing against Connacht on Friday night.

The 21-year-old has been in fine form so far this season, scoring six tries in five appearances for the eastern province so far this season.

He was on the scoresheet again for Leinster against Connacht, scoring two tries in a 42-11 at the Galway Sportsground.

“His overall play around the field is so dynamic. I haven’t seen a huge amount of him - away at the World Cup I didn’t see all those games.

“But reading those reports and I watched the game on Friday night and Leinster were outstanding in that first half,” Quinlan said.

Leo Cullen’s side were absolutely dominant in Galway, employing a fast-paced attacking game that saw them lead by 29 points at half-time.

The former Munster and Ireland flanker was impressed that Leinster were able to win in such a comfortable fashion away from home.

“I think they probably went with a real fear-factor to the Sportsground. It is a very tough place to go. I think they were very nervous about that.

“But their application and their accuracy was superb and when you see someone like Ronan Kelleher making line breaks, running switch lines and offloading - their offloading game and their attack was just immense.

“He looks a superb player. A really top-quality player. Obviously, when you’re that young there’s still nuts and bolts that you’ve got to get right.

“Maybe the scrummaging, some of the lineout throwing. Things like that you do get better at but the ingredients are there for him to become a top-quality international player,” Quinlan commented.

Could Kelleher feature in next year's Six Nations?

While the Tipperary man would be happy to see Kelleher in the Ireland squad for next year’s Six Nations, he felt that experience in the Heineken Champions Cup would have to come first.

“Someone like Ronan Kelleher - if he starts for Leinster in Europe or plays a part, well he has to go straight into the Six Nations squad.

“It’s up to the provincial coaches to bring these guys in and play them. Then if they play a number of games and they’re good enough.

“You can’t take risks in Europe and say, ‘Oh, we’re just going to throw a young guy in there because we want to develop him.’

“There is a bit of a stepping-stone element there. Unless they’re an absolutely freakish talent out of school,” Quinlan said.

Leinster take on Benetton in their first Heineken Champions Cup match at the RDS at 3.15pm on Saturday as they begin their search for a fifth European title.

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


Read more about

Alan Quinlan Leinster Pro14 Ronan Kelleher Rugby

Live: Title

Description

Added to queue
Removed from queue

On Air

Share

Share

Next up in queue

Title
Description
Duration

There are currently no podcasts in the queue

Go to podcasts

On Air

OTB

OTB

Up next

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

07:00 AM-07:30 AM

Share

LIVE: OTB AM

LIVE: OTB AM

07:30 AM-09:30 AM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

09:30 AM-10:00 AM

Share

Repeat: OTB AM

Repeat: OTB AM

10:00 AM-12:00 PM

Share

Golf Weekly

Golf Weekly

01:00 PM-02:00 PM

Share

Brian O'Driscoll on OTB Sports Radio

Brian O'Driscoll on OTB Sports Radio

02:00 PM-03:00 PM

Share

Highlights on Off The Ball

Highlights on Off The Ball

03:00 PM-05:00 PM

Share

OTB

OTB

05:00 PM-06:00 PM

Share

OTB Gold

OTB Gold

06:00 PM-07:00 PM

Share

LIVE: Newsround

LIVE: Newsround

07:00 PM-07:30 PM

Share

LIVE: John Giles

LIVE: John Giles

07:30 PM-08:00 PM

Share

LIVE: Off The Ball

LIVE: Off The Ball

08:00 PM-09:00 PM

Share

LIVE: The Football Show

LIVE: The Football Show

09:00 PM-10:00 PM

Share

LIVE: Off The Brawl

LIVE: Off The Brawl

10:00 PM-11:00 PM

Share

Repeat: Off The Ball

Repeat: Off The Ball

11:00 PM-12:00 AM

Share

00:00:00 / 00:00:00

Share on