Chris Henry is relishing Ireland's back-row battle with Wales

Ireland flanker Chris Henry is relishing the back-row battle with Wales on Saturday
Ireland flanker Chris Henry is relishing the back-row battle with Wales on Saturday

Chris Henry will stick to his strengths in a bid to offset the loss of Sean O'Brien to Ireland's Six Nations squad.

The Ulster flanker slotted into the Irish back row in the 28-6 victory over Scotland in Dublin on Saturday.

He is expected to retain his place for the clash against Wales this weekend and says he has no intention of copying the injured O'Brien's rampaging style.

"Maybe there are certain aspects of the game I can bring that he can't," said Henry.

Leinster's talisman O'Brien may not play again this season after undergoing surgery on an injured shoulder.

Henry competed well in the Irish back row alongside Jamie Heaslip and Peter O'Mahony and hopes his natural ability at the breakdown will be an advantage against the Welsh turnover specialists, Sam Warburton and Dan Lydiate.

"There's always going to be a lot of talk about Sean not being there, he's one of the best in the world," Henry said.

"The only way I can approach it is to say, 'yes he's an unbelievable player, but I have to think maybe I can add something a little bit different.

"Rugby's horrible in that way when people get injured, you get your opportunity.

"So for me, I certainly tried to give everything out there last week.

"Hopefully that can be enough to stay in the side, but we'll just have to wait and see."

Henry acknowledges the importance of winning the turnover battle in order to help Ireland assume control of Saturday's match at the Aviva Stadium.

If selected by coach Joe Schmidt, the 29-year-old is relishing the prospect of going up against Lions captain Sam Warburton who he regards as "probably one of the best in the business".

"Their big thing is on defence and how quickly they get onto the poach, taking one tackler low and the other in position to get a solid threat in there.

"It's going to be something that we have to anticipate, get in there early and do a good job of blasting them out."

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