Ulster’s Paddy Jackson hopes to impress Ireland boss Joe Schmidt

Ulster fly-half Paddy Jackson hopes his recent performances have helped him move ahead of Ian Madigan in the Ireland set-up

Paddy Jackson is keeping his fingers crossed he has moved ahead of Ian Madigan in the Ireland pecking order ahead of the forthcoming autumn internationals.

Jackson, 21, has four Ireland caps to his name – including three starts during this year’s Six Nations – but is competing with Jonny Sexton as well as Leinster’s Madigan for the jersey.

British & Irish Lions fly-half Sexton is expected to be Joe Schmidt’s first choice while Madigan started both summer internationals against the USA and Canada in his absence.

But Madigan has seen his game time limited at Leinster following the arrival of Jimmy Gopperth while Jackson has been an ever present for Ulster.

And Jackson is hoping he can force his way into Schmidt’s plans for Ireland’s clashes with Samoa, Australia and New Zealand.

“It’s a tough one,” Jackson told the Irish Independent.

“I felt I was behind Ian at the end of last season, he had a great season last year, but now he hasn’t really played much rugby over the last few weeks.

“There must be a bit of an advantage due to me playing more games but I can’t really presume anything.

“I’m just trying to impress Joe out on the training pitch because Ian is obviously going to try to do the same.”

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