THE PRO12 SEASON is just four games old but the quest to be top points scorer is already taking only a distinctly Irish look.
Munster’s Ian Keatley, who has started the season in excellent form, has registered 51 points from four league outings and is currently 10 points clear of Edinburgh’s Greig Laidlaw.
Keatley has scored nine penalties, four conversions, two drop goals and dived over for two tries. He was Munster’s man-of-the-match against Benetton Treviso.
He will start Saturday’s away date with Ospreys on the bench, however, and may not get a chance to add to his points total.
Leinster’s Ian Madigan is in third position, on 33 points, and will fancy his chances of adding to that when he lines up at out-half against Connacht on Friday.
Miah Nikora will be on the Connacht bench for that tie.
The New Zealander is fifth in the points table on 30 points but Dan Parks, who won the points race in 2010, will be hoping to take up the bulk of the kicking duties this season.
Edinburgh’s Tim Visser is leading the way in the try-scoring stakes. The newly-anointed Scottish rugby international has run in six tries so far this season.
George North, who was so devastating against Connacht two weeks ago, is second with five trips across the whitewash.
DTH van der Merwe, another player that has enjoyed the hospitality of weak Connacht defence, and Daniel Evans are tied on four tries apiece.