19 May, 11:13
There are six uncapped players in the Ireland squad for the summer tour to North America that was named this morning. An Emerging Ireland squad has also been selected for the Tblisi Cup in Georgia.
Stringer should make his 70th appearance for Ireland against South Africa on Saturday week - phenomenally, he has started 32 of Ireland's last 34 internationals since Guy Easterby was in the starting line-up for the friendly match against Italy in August 2003.
The Corkman came off the bench for the Autumn international wins over the USA (November 2004) and Romania (November 2005).
Paul O'Connell, Marcus Horan, Geordan Murphy, Andrew Trimble and Donncha O'Callaghan arrive down for training at St. Gerard's. Leicester full-back/winger Murphy had a pivotal role to play in Ireland's Autumn Test win over South Africa in November 2004 when his ankle-tap tackle on Percy Montgomery denied the Springbooks a certain try, just moments after Ronan O'Gara's infamous score.
An overhead view of the session in Bray on Thursday morning. With the South Africans and Australians already camped in the UK for their tours this month, the Pacific Islanders, the third team on Ireland's radar this Autumn, assemble this Sunday with a game against Wales to follow on Saturday week.
With little time for preparation, the Islanders coach Pat Lam said: "The guys who have been selected are all fine individual rugby players. But what it's really going to come down to is us fitting in as a team.
"Keeping it pretty simple, making it pretty clear what we're trying to achieve as a unit, as a group of people, and then just go out and entertain and do our best. We're playing in different countries, with different coaches and different systems and we just need to come together and make it happen as quickly as possible."
Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll showed no signs of the ankle injury which troubled him at Tuesday's training session in Bray. The Leinster centre has played four times previously against South Africa, scoring one try in the 26-17 second Test defeat to the 'Boks at Newlands in June 2004.
Munster and Ireland out-half Ronan O'Gara practising his kicking in Bray. O'Gara took his record Heineken Cup points tally to 786 points over the past two weekends, kicking five conversions, three penalties and a drop goal.
The San Diego-born O'Gara played in nine of Ireland's 11 Test matches last season, averaging 12.77 points per game.
Brian O'Driscoll was central to Ireland's 17-12 win over South Africa at Lansdowne Road two years ago. Ireland finished that game with a 90% tackle success rate and O'Driscoll and Shane Horgan's thundering hits on their midfield opponents De Wet Barry and Marius Joubert were certainly key to that statistic.
Members of the St. Gerard's senior team watch on from the sidelines as the Irish squad go through their paces.
Eddie O'Sullivan watches his players train in the Wicklow sun, alongside assistant/forwards coach Niall O'Donovan and team manager Ger Carmody. Having worked for the IRFU since 1992 and acted as Ireland squad administrator at the 2003 World Cup, Carmody was appointed as Irish manager last September.
Simon Easterby, Girvan Dempsey and Gordon D'Arcy on the move at training. Llanelli flanker Easterby has not lined out for Ireland since the Triple Crown win over England last March - he missed the summer Tour in order to recuperate from a series of head injuries.
Gordon D'Arcy catches Geordan Murphy off guard with a tackle. Having collected his first five Irish caps as a replacement between 1999 and 2003, the 26-year-old D'Arcy's last 18 appearances for his country have been as starts.
**All photos by Donall Farmer of Inpho Photography**
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