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'The future is Caelan Doris for many, many reasons' - Victor Costello insists number 8 must start England clash


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Doris’s debut against Scotland earlier this month was cruelly cut short after just five minutes due to a head injury. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Doris’s debut against Scotland earlier this month was cruelly cut short after just five minutes due to a head injury. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Doris’s debut against Scotland earlier this month was cruelly cut short after just five minutes due to a head injury. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Former Ireland No 8 Victor Costello has urged Andy Farrell to back Caelan Doris and start the 21-year-old in Sunday's Six Nations clash against England.

The Ireland head coach is expected to keep faith with the tried and tested back-row of Peter O'Mahony, Josh van der Flier and CJ Stander, with Doris potentially having to make do with a place on the bench.

Doris's debut against Scotland earlier this month was cruelly cut short after just five minutes due to a head injury, which meant that he also missed the win over Wales.

Doris has now fully recovered, however, and was included in Ireland's unchanged squad for this weekend's showdown at Twickenham.

The Leinster No 8 is in line to replace Max Deegan on the bench when Farrell names his team tomorrow, but Costello believes that he should put his trust in Doris again.

Experimented

"I would start him because I think they should continue with that change they experimented with," the 39-times capped international said. "CJ Stander and Peter O'Mahony got more chances in that back-row than many others. They weren't playing that well in a poor (Munster) side. The other side of that is they have played really well since Doris's injury.

"However, the future is Caelan Doris. He is the future for many, many reasons.

"He has huge pace for a big man, so he can accelerate up to speed in short distances, which makes him hard to tackle. His footwork allows him to gain an extra yard. He is very confident and assured. I would go with him because he deserves to show his talent on the international stage.

"I think if you put Doris into that back-row, he will be there for a long time - Jamie Heaslip-esque. Farrell should start him now, why not?

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"I'm convinced that if you pick him now, there won't be much more back-row debate in the coming years, things will fall into place."


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