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Five Munster Men Start For Ireland

5th February 2021 By The Editor

Keith Earls starts for Ireland against Wales.

Keith Earls starts for Ireland against Wales. Inpho

Munster’s Tadhg Beirne, Keith Earls, Conor Murray, Peter O’Mahony and CJ Stander will start for Ireland with Dave Kilcoyne among the replacements for Sunday’s Guinness Six Nations opener against Wales in Cardiff.

Johnny Sexton will captain the side as he competes in his twelfth Six Nations Championship and his second as Ireland captain. He is joined in the half-backs by Murray who is one of five players from the match day squad who played in Ireland’s last Six Nations victory in Cardiff in 2013 (Murray, Sexton, Healy, O’Mahony, Earls).

Robbie Henshaw and Garry Ringrose are partnered in midfield having last started a Test match together in the quarter-final of the 2019 Rugby World Cup. Hugo Keenan is selected at fullback with support on the wings from Earls and James Lowe, who makes his Six Nations debut.

Cian Healy, who makes his 50th Six Nations appearance, is joined in the front row by Rob Herring and Andrew Porter. Beirne and James Ryan form the lock partnership with O’Mahony, Josh van der Flier and Stander named in the backrow.

The replacements are Ronan Kelleher, Kilcoyne, Tadgh Furlong, Iain Henderson, Will Connors, Jamison Gibson Park, Billy Burns and Jordan Larmour.

The game kicks off at 3pm on Sunday and will be televised on Virgin in the Republic of Ireland and on BBC in Northern Ireland.

Ireland Team To Face Wales

15 Hugo Keenan (Leinster/UCD) 6 caps

14 Keith Earls (Munster/Young Munster) 88 caps

13 Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 30 caps

12 Robbie Henshaw (Leinster/Buccaneers) 47 caps

11 James Lowe (Leinster) 2 caps

10 Jonathan Sexton (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 95 caps Captain

9 Conor Murray (Munster/Garryowen) 87 caps

1 Cian Healy (Leinster/Clontarf) 104 caps

2 Rob Herring (Ulster/Ballynahinch) 16 caps

3 Andrew Porter (Leinster/UCD) 32 caps

4 Tadhg Beirne (Munster/Lansdowne) 17 caps

5 James Ryan (Leinster/UCD) 32 caps

6 Peter O’Mahony (Munster/Cork Constitution) 73 caps

7 Josh van der Flier (Leinster/UCD) 28 caps

8 CJ Stander (Munster/Shannon) 46 caps


16 Ronan Kelleher (Leinster/Lansdowne) 6 caps

17 Dave Kilcoyne (Munster/UL Bohemians) 39 caps

18 Tadhg Furlong (Leinster/Clontarf) 44 caps

19 Iain Henderson (Ulster/Academy) 58 caps

20 Will Connors (Leinster/UCD) 5 caps

21 Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster) 5 caps

22 Billy Burns (Ulster) 3 caps

23 Jordan Larmour (Leinster/St Mary’s College) 24 caps

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