Fitzgerald tipped to succeed BOD

Wed, 27 Nov 2013 18:48
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He's got everything that a top 13 needs

As Brian O'Driscoll nears the end of his career, Leinster manager Guy Easterby believes he has the perfect successor lined up - teammate Luke Fitzgerald.

Fitzgerald, 26, has played for Leinster his entire professional career and made his Ireland debut back in 2006 before touring South Africa with the British and Irish Lions in 2009.

However, a series of injury problems have prevented him from fulfilling much of his promise in the Pro12.

He featured just three times in the league last season, but Fitzgerald has already pulled on the Leinster blue four times in this campaign.

And, after seeing Fitzgerald replace O'Driscoll in Ireland's narrow defeat to New Zealand on Sunday, Easterby believes the 26-year-old can step up for club and country when the time comes.

"We're looking for a long-term successor to Brian and Luke's got to be right up there in terms of the queue behind him," said Easterby.

"He's got the skills set for there. Defensively, he's very sound. Physically, he's really sound. He's got a great passing game as well, great feet. He's got everything that a top 13 needs.

"What he probably needs is some game-time there. He's played a good bit on the wing throughout his career and a bit at fullback, as well as spending a bit of time at 13-stroke-12.

"He certainly has the ability to do it."