Josh Van Der Flier feels becoming globe player of year has produced him a marked man
Josh Van Der Flier believes he has turn out to be a marked man because getting crowned globe player of the year as he seeks to celebrate his 50th Ireland cap with Grand Slam glory.
Flanker Van Der Flier swept the international person prize on the back of a stellar 2022 and has continued his fine kind to aid place his nation on the brink of a Guinness Six Nations clean sweep.
The 29-year-old will make a milestone Test look in Saturday’s Dublin showdown with England and feels his current elevation has led to higher on-field consideration.
“I suppose there’s certainly been a couple of instances in games exactly where I get the ball and come across there are 3 lads on me, exactly where I believed I’d have a bit much more space,” mentioned Van Der Flier.
“It could not be the case and it is in my head but there are certainly a couple of instances when I’ve kinda felt like an individual has enjoyed placing a large hit on me or a thing.”
Asked if there had been some in-game jibes from opposition players, he replied: “Not definitely no, fortunately – much more the lads on my group if I make a error!
“(There have) not (been) also lots of alterations. But I suppose I come across certainly ball-carrying for instance I’m marked a bit much more I guess. But it leaves space for other persons.”
Van Der Flier will this weekend seek to make up for the disappointment of missing Ireland’s 2018 Grand Slam clincher against England at Twickenham by means of injury.
He demonstrated his group-1st mentality in the course of final weekend’s chaotic 22-7 round-4 win in Scotland by throwing lineouts following the loss of hookers Dan Sheehan and Ronan Kelleher.
Andy Farrell joked the back-row forward would be replacing captain Johnny Sexton as the team’s target-kicker against Steve Borthwick’s side.
“It will be a quite particular day,” mentioned Van Der Flier. “Fifty caps, it has flown by pretty immediately.
“In my head, I’m attempting not to feel about it also considerably I’m sort of acknowledging that that is what it is, I guess, and as properly naturally the significance of the large game that it is and what’s on the line.
“I will not be also worried about an person point like that (50 caps), the point that we’ve all worked towards is to win trophies for Ireland and large games for Ireland, so that is certainly the large concentrate.”
Will Connors, pictured, threatened to take Josh Van Der Flier’s spot for club and nation ( Marco Iacobucci/PA)
Van Der Flier was in danger of falling behind Leinster group-mate Will Connors in the pecking order for club and nation a couple of years ago.
The quantity seven has overcome that threat to create into a crucial performer for Ireland, earning praise from his head coach.
“Wow, what a couple of years for Josh,” mentioned Farrell. “You go back to his story, all this is mainly because of competitors for locations in Leinster and in Ireland – Will Connors coming on to the scene, et cetera.
“Josh was 1 of the guys who place his hand up, had a word with himself and mentioned, ‘this is up to me’.
“Since he’s performed that, he’s under no circumstances looked back and he deserves all the credit he gets, mainly because he’s unbelievably diligent as far as his preparation is concerned.
“How he attacks each game is just phenomenal to watch.”