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Leinster tell Sexton not to panic

Guinness PRO12 Editor

14 Sep 2011

Jonny Sexton didn’t exactly set New Zealand alight with his kicking form on his World Cup debut but Leinster skills and kicking coach Richie Murphy has rubbished suggestions it is because the fly-half has changed his style.

While Declan Kidney’s men laboured to a 22-10 victory of USA, 26-year-old Sexton was finding it difficult to find the posts, landing just two of his six attempts, one penalty and one conversion.

But Sexton wasn’t alone in struggling in New Zealand, Jonny Wilkinson missed an unprecedented five kicks on goal while Dan Carter was also wayward in the All Blacks’ opener.

And after having a chat with his first-choice half-back, Murphy insists there is nothing to worry about.

"There is no change in Jonny's style," said Murphy, who has other outside-half Matt Berquist out for four months now after picking up an injury against the Dragons.

"It is a technique, obviously he wasn't kicking well.

“I believe the conditions were extremely hard. He was obviously disappointed with what happened, but there is no intentional change in kicking style.

"He was not on his own. They all seemed to be having kicking problems. We spoke and he said he actually kicked the ball very well.

"It was particularly hard underfoot and there was that wind, so I think it is just a case of trying to wipe it clean and try and start again."