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Sexton lines out to help sick children in Crumlin hospital

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Irish international rugby star Jonathan Sexton pictured with Saoirse Boland (9), at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.

Irish international rugby star Jonathan Sexton pictured with Saoirse Boland (9), at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.

Irish international rugby star Jonathan Sexton pictured with Saoirse Boland (9), at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.

Rugby star Jonathan Sexton surprised the children of Dublin's Crumlin Hospital when he called by the cardiac ward yesterday afternoon.

The fly half has been announced as the official ambassador for the Children's Medical and Research Foundation (CMRF); the fundraising arm of Our Lady's Children's Hospital.

Sexton, who was central to Ireland's weekend win over Australia, said meeting the children had been an "inspirational" experience.

"I really enjoyed meeting all the children in the hospital who are extremely brave and inspirational considering the everyday challenges they face," he said.

"I am honoured to be in a position to help the children of Our Lady's Children's Hospital".

CMRF are currently in the midst of raising €1.5m for a new out-patients clinic.

There is a possibility the construction of the clinic will be delayed if sufficient funds are not raised.

Joe Quinsey, CEO of the CMRF said: "We are delighted to welcome Johnny on board.

"He is already one of Ireland's most successful sports stars and will be a fantastic ambassador for us at a time when the need for donations and continued fundraising is paramount."

Irish Independent