The Ireland ‘A’ team to play Canada in the Barclays Churchill Cup at Exeter’s Sandy Park this Saturday (8pm kick-off) has been named.
The Ireland ‘A’ team is coached by Connacht’s Michael Bradley with Ulster’s Allen Clarke as his assistant and the side is captained by Connacht hooker John Fogarty.
This is the second year Ireland ‘A’ are competing for Churchill Cup honours. Last year’s tournament, staged in Canada and the USA, saw the Bradley-coached side lift the Plate title.
Commenting on the 2007 competition, Michael Bradley said: “We have three tough tests coming up but if we perform to the best of our ability I believe these players can gain great experience from the competition.
“Three of our starting line-up – Johnny O’Connor, Jeremy Staunton and Roger Wilson – have been capped at full international level so we’ll be looking to them to be leaders. Also, there are some exciting young players who have the opportunity to show us what they can do.
“Canada and the New Zealand Maori offer international class opposition so this tournament will play an important role in developing the players’ experience at this level,” added the former Ireland scrum half.
The team selected for Saturday’s match includes two of the Irish Under-20s’ Grand Slam-winning heroes – centre Darren Cave and winger Keith Earls.
IRELAND ‘A’ TEAM AND REPLACEMENTS (v Canada, Barclays Churchill Cup, Sandy Park, Exeter, Saturday, May 19, 8pm kick-off):
15 – Johnny Sexton (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
14 – Paul McKenzie (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
13 – Darren Cave (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
12 – Seamus Mallon (Northampton Saints)
11 – Keith Earls (Thomond/Munster)
10 – *Jeremy Staunton (London Wasps)
9 – Chris Keane (Buccaneers/Connacht)
1 – Ray Hogan (Galwegians/Connacht)
2 – John Fogarty (Buccaneers/Connacht)
3 – Michael Ross (NEC Harlequins)
4 – Ryan Caldwell (Dungannon/Ulster)
5 – Andrew Farley (Buccaneers/Connacht)
6 – Stephen Keogh (Shannon/Leinster)
7 – *Johnny O’Connor (London Wasps)
8 – *Roger Wilson (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
16 – Sean Cronin (Shannon/Munster)
17 – Declan Fitzpatrick (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
18 – David Gannon (Buccaneers/Connacht)
19 – John Muldoon (Galwegians/Connacht)
20 – *Kieran Campbell (Dungannon/Ulster)
21 – John Hearty (Galwegians/Connacht)
22 – Fergus McFadden (UCD/Leinster)
N.B. * = Capped at full international level
– Daniel Riordan was not available for selection due to hamstring injury –
Tour Management –
Michael Bradley (Coach)
Allen Clarke (Assistant Coach)
Joey Miles (Manager)
George Murray (Video Analyst)
Simon Harland (Physiotherapist)
Des Ryan (Fitness Advisor)