Listowel has a hero's welcome for Sexton

MARISA REIDY

LEINSTER rugby star Jonathan Sexton, will receive a hero's welcome when he returns to his father's home town of Listowel within the next two weeks, following his man of the match performance in the Heineken Cup final in Cardiff on Saturday.

Following a match winning display, which saw him score 28 of Leinster's 33 points, Sexton is now due to take some time out and unwind in north Kerry before it's back to training for the Rugby World Cup later in the year.

According to Sexton's godfather, Listowel publican Billy Keane, the Leinster number 10 is keen to get back to Listowel to see his nan Brenda Sexton in the next week or two and he is sure to receive a great welcome in the town.

Recalling Saturday's match, which he watched in Cardiff's Millennium Stadium with Jonathan's dad Jerry and uncles Kenneth and Keith, Billy said it was a superb day for the young out half — and his Kerry supporters!

While some die hard Munster fans might have begrudged Leinster their win, a strong north Kerry contingent were certainly cheering on their stay player.

"He had great support from north Kerry, given that his dad Jerry is from Listowel and his mum Brenda (Keane) is from Ballylongford," Billy said. "Every chance he gets he spends it here in north Kerry, and there were certainly plenty of support for him on Saturday."

Billy said Sexton's career-defining persormance on Saturday was dedicated to his late grandfather, John — the hugely popular Listowel businessman who died in December.

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