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Under-18s Unchanged For European Decider

Under-18s Unchanged For European Decider

Greg Lynch and the Ireland Under-18 Clubs management team have selected an unchanged side for Saturday’s 2008 FIRA-AER U-18 European championship final against France (Stadio Comunale di Monigo, kick-off 4pm local time), which is a repeat of last year’s decider.

Head coach Greg Lynch has kept faith with the side that edged out England 8-3 in a hard-fought semi-final in Venice on Wednesday.

That means that the Leinster back-line trio of Gavin Nyawata, Andrew Boyle and Niall Earls have managed to hold onto their starting spots, after being introduced following last weekend’s 53-0 opening win over Russia.

Of the backs, full-back Luke O’Dea, centre David Lynch, winger Robert Kennedy and scrum half Adam Kennedy have started both of Ireland’s championship games to date.

Six of the forwards have been ever-present, including captain James Robinson and his front row colleague Kieran Brookes, who scored the all-important try against England and he also touched down against the Russians.

Hooker Karl Egan and blindside flanker Dominic Gallagher, who were two new inclusions for the England game, remain in the starting line-up with Declan Farrell and Aaron Spring kept on the replacements bench.

Saturday’s clash with France, who beat hosts Italy 22-15 in their semi-final, will give Ireland a chance to gain revenge for losing last year’s final to the French – Lynch’s 2007 side lost 4-3 in a dramatic penalty shoot-out (click here for a match report).

There are four survivors from last year’s panel in the current Irish squad. Waterpark clubman Paul Molloy donned the number 2 jersey for the 2007 final, the aforementioned Robinson was used as a front row replacement, while half-backs Niall Earls and Adam Kennedy did not play in the decider in Dax.

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For more information on the 2008 Irish U-18 Clubs squad and the tournament itself, please click here.

Our dedicated FIRA-AER U-18 European Championship section can be found here. Please click here for the official FIRA-AER website.

IRELAND UNDER-18 CLUBS SQUAD (v France, FIRA-AER U-18 European Championship final, Saturday, March 22, Stadio Comunale di Monigo, Treviso, kick-off 4pm local time):

15 – Luke O’Dea (Shannon/Munster)
14 – Gavin Nyawata (Naas/Leinster)
13 – Andrew Boyle (St. Brigid’s/Leinster)
12 – David Lynch (Naas/Leinster)
11 – Robert Kennedy (Longford/Leinster)
10 – Niall Earls (Wicklow/Leinster)
9 – Adam Kennedy (Buccaneers/Connacht)
1 – James Robinson (Corinthians/Connacht) (capt)
2 – Karl Egan (Corinthians/Connacht)
3 – Kieran Brookes (Fylde/Exiles)
4 – Shane Casey (Castlebar/Connacht)
5 – Dean Landy (Carrick-on-Suir/Munster)
6 – Dominic Gallagher (Lisburn/Ulster)
7 – James Stephenson (London Irish/Exiles)
8 – Josh Bennett (Gloucester/Exiles)


16 – Fergal Lynch (Virginia/Ulster)
17 – Paul Molloy (Waterpark/Munster)
18 – Declan Farrell (Leeds Carnegie/Exiles)
19 – James Simpson (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
20 – Aidan Mulligan (Bective Rangers/Leinster)
21 – Aaron Spring (Sligo/Connacht)
22 – Mark Dolan (Buccaneers/Connacht)
23 – Callum McKie (Brentwood/Exiles)
24 – Eoin Griffin (Corinthians/Connacht)
25 – Tchad Collins Francois (Truro College/Exiles)
26 – Kailyn Domican (Naas/Leinster)