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Lam: Craig Ronaldson gives Connacht different threat

Guinness PRO12 Rugby Editor

22 Oct 2016

©INPHO/Billy Stickland

Connacht head coach Pat Lam believes the return of Craig Ronaldson from injury has added another dimension to his side’s midfield, as they look to make it two wins from two in the Champions Cup on Sunday.

The Guinness PRO12 champions beat Toulouse 23-21 last weekend to open up their first ever Champions Cup campaign on a high note, with Ronaldson returning to slot a decisive conversion through the posts from the touchline late in the game.

The 26-year-old centre has played just twice so far this term, with a thigh injury keeping him on the sidelines for the opening weeks of the Guinness PRO12.

But having reunited his exciting partnership with Bundee Aki, Lam believes Ronaldson could hold the key to Connacht’s fortunes, with competition for places hotting up in the centres.

“Craig offers something totally different to the midfield,” Lam said. “That’s what you want.

“You’ve got Bundee, who is Bundee. You got Peter Robb, who is pretty abrasive and hardly makes errors. Craig brings a kicking game and has a lot of experience at outhalf and you got a left foot there too.

“You’ve Eoin Griffin who has a really good passing game, and Rory Parata.

“So there is good competition in that midfield now, an area where people thought would be difficult when Robbie [Henshaw] left.”