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.
Ireland and Lions captain Brian O'Driscoll believes Gavin Henson's recent criticism of the Lions tour to New Zealand will do the Wales centre few favours.
Ospreys star Henson hit out at Lions coach Sir Clive Woodward and media consultant Alastair Campbell in a serialisation of his book "My Grand Slam Year", but also drew O'Driscoll's ire at Monday's launch of the 2005/06 Heineken Cup by criticising his tour team mates.
Henson reckons too many of the 2005 Lions were "in love" with the sound of their own voices. The players are unnamed in the book, which is sure to court some controversy when it hits the shops.
O'Driscoll, who is recovering steadily from the dislocated right shoulder injury he received in the first Test against the All Blacks, said: "I don't think you do yourself any favours by giving it out about team mates in a book, rather than saying it to their face. I'm not sure if it is down to Gavin's inexperience but I don't think you would see someone like Jason Robinson doing it.
"And I don't think you would see any of the young guys doing it. It's just up to the individual and it's the way Gavin wants to vent his personal frustration. I'm sure he will stand by that."
Sidelined for next month's Autumn Test series, O'Driscoll is almost ready to step up his fitness regime. A return at Christmas could could to fruition, but it is more likely to be January when the 26-year-old centre gets back on a pitch.
"It is not a case of setting targets," he added. "I am going to see the specialist tomorrow (Tuesday), and kind of get the go-ahead to start some more rigorous type of preparation."