The Ireland U20 team to take on their Italian counterparts in the 6 Nations on Friday 24th February at Dubarry Park, Athlone. Kick-off 7.05pm
Ulster’s Patrick Jackson (outhalf) will captain the side for the third time, and is joined in the team by Chris Farrell (centre), Iain Henderson (lock) and Kyle McCall (prop).
Belfast Harlequins outhalf Stuart Olding has been named on the bench effectively replacing Sam Coghlan-Murray who slips out of the squad having been replaced in the starting XV by, last weeks try scorer, Foster Horan. Kieran Marmion, Tadgh Beirne and Jordan Coghlan all step up to the starting XV for this one with Luke McGrath, Daniel Qualter, Aaron Conneely taking a break on the pine.
Speaking ahead of Fridays Game, U20’s coach, Mike Ruddock said:
We are looking forward to this week’s test and in particular looking forward to backing up our two previous displays.
We achieved victory in our last two games because we have outworked the opposition and expect the same this week along with a quality display of skills. Ireland Coach, Mike Ruddock
Italy finally managed to get a game in last week after their first tow games had been cancelled. The young Italian side came away with a creditable 19 – 5 loss to France, in France, and will be looking to push Ireland all the way on Friday night.
Ireland, however, having got that difficult French trip out of the way a fortnight ago will be trying to progress through the remaining fixtures unbeaten to set up a “possible” mouth watering grand slam fixture against England on St Patrick’s Day!
IRELAND: Shane Layden, Conor Finn, Chris Farrell, JJ Hanrahan, Foster Horan, Patrick Jackson, Kieran Marmion, Kyle McCall, Niall Scannell, Peter Reilly, Iain Henderson, Tadgh Beirne, Jordan Coghlan, Conor Gilsenan, Jack Conan. Replacements: James Rael, Des Merrey, Jake Cawley, Daniel Qualter, Aaron Conneely, Luke McGrath, Cathal Marsh, Stuart Olding.