Gatland boost for Horgan
Coach Warren Gatland is tipping his beleaguered winger Shane Horgan to bounce back from the latest scandal to hit the Ireland squad when he makes his international debut against Scotland at Lansdowne Road tomorrow.
Gatland's preparation for a crucial Lloyds TSB Six Nations clash was badly disrupted by revelations that Horgan, one of five new caps in a much-changed line-up, was involved in an alleged night-club assault.
Although the incident is alleged to have happened in Galway four months earlier, the IRFU were unaware of it until the Dublin Evening Herald broke the news and the Irish management were furious over the timing.
"It's a little bit sad that there are people out there trying to disrupt what
is probably the biggest day of his life," said Gatland "The players have rallied around him and we've said as management we'll give him 100% of our support. He seems to be really focused and hopefully he will do really well."
As if he didn't have enough to worry about, Horgan , who has played all his rugby with Leinster in the centre, will have to adjust to life on the wing against the experienced Kenny Logan.
"We're playing him out of position but he's relishing the challenge," added
Gatland. "Good footballers can play anywhere and, from what we have seen, he is a very good footballer. He is big, he's physical and he's quick and we think he can do a good job for us on the wing."