Jump to main content


Bishop and Deane Join Ireland Squad

Bishop and Deane Join Ireland Squad

12/03/02.Justin Bishop, fresh from his success with London Irish at the weekend and Sale centre Mel Deane flew into Belfast to team up with the Ireland squad for their four day training camp.

Deane, the ex-Connacht centre now with Sale, and Bishop (pictured) were called into to the squad following the injury to Kevin Maggs.Maggs is almost certainly out for the remainder of the Six Nations championship after sustaining a broken arm in Bath’s 27-9 defeat at home to Leicester on Saturday. Other possible replacements include Rob Henderson, but given that he is is still recovering from a groin injury, is not expected to be fully fit again in time for Saturday week’s match at home to Italy. The A team inside centre Jason Holland has also been sidelined from the training session at Ravenhill due to a shoulder injury.

Speaking about the sudden departure of Maggs from the squad, manager Brian O’Brien expressed his disapointment. “I spoke to him (Maggs) yesterday morning and he was going to his doctor for an update yesterday evening. Unless there is a small miracle, he’s out for the rest of the season. It’s a shame, because he was on top of is game.”

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

The loss of Maggs could undoubtedly be quite unsettling for the Irish team, but the 22 man squad for the Italian game will be announced on Thursday.

Whilst Eddie O’Sullivan is clearly keen to look at his midfield options judging by the call-ups for Deane and Bishop, there is a possibility that Shane Horgan will be asked revert to centre and renew his midfield partnership with Brian O’Driscoll, with Tyrone Howe or John Kelly the contenders for the wing position. There is also the possibility that the Irish selectors might try Kelly in the centre with O’Driscoll and leave Horgan on the wing.

All will become a little clearer at Thursday’s squad announcement.