Leinster have a new captain with Jamie Heaslip away on World Cup duty

LEINSTER HAVE ANNOUNCED that Kevin McLaughlin has been appointed captain of the province for the World Cup period.

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Regular skipper Jamie Heaslip will be away in Wales and England with Joe Schmidt’s Ireland for the global tournament, meaning new head coach Leo Cullen has replaced the number eight for the short term.

Heaslip is away with Ireland, so McLaughlin steps up as captain. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

30-year-old back row McLaughlin was severely held back by injuries last season, but is well regarded as a leader and standard setter within Leinster’s squad. The Ireland international has captained the province before but will relish the latest opportunity.

“I think this is a great opportunity for Kevin. He had an unlucky run with injuries last season and I know he is very keen to hit the ground running this season,” said Cullen of the appointment.

“Kevin is a player who leads by example with little regard for his own body and he epitomises everything we want to see from a Leinster Rugby team going forward. He is selfless, puts team first and is always driving his own standards as well as the standards of those around him.”

Leinster play Ulster in a pre-season clash at Kingspan Stadium tomorrow evening.

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