Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell
Ireland captain Paul O'Connell
Billy Stickland
O'Callaghan To Start, O'Gara On The Bench
2 February 2012, 12:06 pm
By The Editor
The two contentious positions on the Ireland side for the opening game in the RBS 6 Nations, lock and out-half go to Donncha O'Callaghan and Jonathan Sexton. Ronan O'Gara is named on the bench as is Peter O'Mahony.
There are three changes to the side that lined out against the same opposition in Ireland's last game in the 2011 Rugby World Cup.

Keith Earls will start at centre alongside Gordon D'Arcy with Andrew Trimble coming into the team on the left wing. In the half-backs Jonathan Sexton will win his 25th cap and he is partnered by Conor Murray.

The pack is unchanged from the last game with Paul O'Connell wearing the captain's armband. The uncapped Peter O'Mahony is named in the replacements.

IRELAND Team & Replacements

15 - Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster)
14 - Tommy Bowe (Ospreys)
13 - Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster)
12 - Gordon D'Arcy (Lansdowne/Leinster)
11 - Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster)
10 - Jonathan Sexton (St. Mary's College/Leinster)
9 - Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster)
1 - Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)
2 - Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster)
3 - Mike Ross (Clontarf/Leinster)
4 - Donncha O'Callaghan (Cork Constitution/Munster)
5 - Paul O'Connell (Young Munster/Munster) Captain
6 - Stephen Ferris (Dungannon/Ulster)
7 - Sean O'Brien (Clontarf/Leinster)
8 - Jamie Heaslip (Naas/Leinster)

Replacements:

16 - Sean Cronin (St. Mary's College/Leinster)
17 - Tom Court (Malone/Ulster)
18 - Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster)
19 - Peter O'Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster)*

20 - Eoin Reddan (Lansdowne/Leinster)
21 - Ronan O'Gara (Cork Constitution/Munster)
22 - Fergus McFadden (Old Belvedere/Leinster)

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