Connacht prop Paddy McAllister has jumped to the defence of his captain – Paul Boyle – who has been criticised online following his side’s defeat to the Bristol Bears at the weekend.
Connacht fell to a 27-18 loss in Heineken Champions Cup in Galway, with their former boss Pat Lam leaving his old stomping ground with a bonus-point victory.
Connacht turned down a shot at a losing bonus point when captain Paul Boyle opted not to take a late kickable penalty. The decision not to take the points were heavily criticised online, with the buck ultimately resting with the 23-year-old.
Veteran prop McAllister had a few words for those directing criticism at the young player, who is at the beginning of his senior captaincy journey.
“Seeing a teammate getting some of the abuse I’m seeing on Twitter is ridiculous, Paul Boyle is a young man who is playing out of his skin atm for his club.
“Doing a great job as a leader in the squad and has the backing from everyone. Those keyboard warriors can uppercut themselves”
Seeing a teammate getting some of the abuse Im seeing on Twitter is ridiculous, Paul Boyle is a young man who is playing out of his skin atm for his club. Doing a great job as a leader in the squad and has the backing from everyone. Those keyboard warriors can uppercut themselves
— Paddy McAllister (@PaddyMcAllister) December 20, 2020
The decision is likely but a blip in the career of the highly-rated back rower, who has received rave reviews over recent seasons.
Boyle has had a rapid rise through the Connacht ranks, having made his debut for the Westerners as a Year 1 Academy player against Munster in January 2018. The 6’2, 106kg No.8 was duly rewarded with his first professional contract midway through the 2018/19 season and has gone on to play over 45 times for his province.
Boyle first captained Connacht just three weeks ago, leading head coach Andy Friend to say of the young forward: “Paul Boyle is a natural-born leader and fully deserves the opportunity to lead out the squad for the first time.”
Originally from Gorey in Co Wexford, Boyle previously captained the Ireland Under 20’s side at the World Rugby Championship.
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now