Court determined to be included

by Michelle Fortune , 09 January 2013

Tom Court has vowed to do all he can to ensure he is not omitted from Ireland's Six Nations squad.

Court failed to make the cut for the November internationals as Declan Kidney opted to include Munster's David Kilcoyne and Leinster's Michael Bent and the omission hurt the Ulster loosehead prop.

Born in Brisbane, Court qualifies for Ireland through his maternal grandfather and he has hinted that his omission from the squad in November may not have had anything to do with his form but he is determined to turn his disappointment into motivation.

"I was very disappointed in November to be left out of all those game. There is a lot of things going on with regards team selection," Court is quoted as saying in the Irish Daily Star.

"Not being a born and bred Irishman, whether that sticks in people's minds or not, I'm not really sure. But I've been eligible to play for Ireland since the day I was born.

"They can take it whatever way they like. I'm going to keep playing as well as I possibly can and keep making myself available. If they use me they use me. It's up to them."

Court has 29 caps for Ireland but he is not the first choice - Cian Healy has that honour - and he knows that at 32 he is likely to miss out once Kidney and his selectors decide to bring in new players.

However, he is determined to make it impossible for Kidney to leave him out of the squad for as long as possible.

"If a coach is under pressure to be blooding younger guys or playing a different style of rugby, it's usually the older guys that are first on the list - especially if they're not first choice," he went on.

"You're absolutely gutted when you're left out and it was a shock to the system, but I am playing as well as I can. I still think I have a lot to offer and I'm not going to be going out with my hands up.

"I'm going to be making life and team selection difficult as possible for them for the next few years."

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