The Ireland ‘A’ team to play the USA in their opening pool game of the Barclays Churchill Cup in Kingston on Wednesday has been named. Coach Allen Clarke has picked a side with a good blend of youth and experience for the encounter.
The Ireland side includes Heineken Cup winners Denis Hurley and Tomas O’Leary as well as Jonathan Sexton, one of Leinster’s Magners League winners.
Fresh from Ireland Sevens duty Brian Tuohy makes up the back-three alongside Hurley and Mark McCrea.
There is an all-Munster look to the midfield with Keith Earls and Kieran Lewis completing the back-line.
In the forwards, Ireland ‘A’ captain Bob Casey is partnered in the second row by Ryan Caldwell. The front row comprises of Leinster tyro Cian Healy, Munster’s Denis Fogarty and Mike Ross of Harlequins.
The back row features the multi-capped experience of Johnny O’Connor, Neil Best and Roger Wilson.
IRELAND ‘A’ TEAM & REPLACEMENTS (v USA, Barclays Churchill Cup, Richardson Stadium, Kingston, Wednesday, June 11, 7.05pm local time/12.05am (Thursday) Irish time)):
15 – Denis Hurley (Cork Constitution/Munster)
14 – Mark McCrea (Malone/Ulster)
13 – *Kieran Lewis (Garryowen/Munster)
12 – Keith Earls (Garryowen/Munster)
11 – Brian Tuohy (Cornish Pirates)
10 – Jonathan Sexton (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
9 – *Tomas O’Leary (Dolphin/Munster)
1 – Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)
2 – Denis Fogarty (Cork Constitution/Munster)
3 – Michael Ross (Harlequins)
4 – *Bob Casey (London Irish) (capt)
5 – Ryan Caldwell (Dungannon/Ulster)
6 – *Neil Best (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
7 – *Johnny O’Connor (Corinthians/Connacht)
8 – *Roger Wilson (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
16 – Tom Court (Malone/Ulster)
17 – Sean Cronin (Shannon/Munster)
18 – *Trevor Hogan (Shannon/Leinster)
19 – Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster)
20 – David Pollock (Dungannon/Ulster)
21 – Frank Murphy (Leicester)
22 – Ian Keatley (Clontarf/Leinster)
* Capped at full international level
Coach – Allen Clarke
Assistant Coach – Dave O’Mahony
Team Manager – John McKibbin
Ireland ‘A’ Tournament Schedule:
Wednesday, June 11: USA v Ireland ‘A’ at Richardson Stadium, Kingston
Saturday, June 14: Ireland ‘A’ v England Saxons at Fletchers Fields, Toronto
Saturday, June 21: Barclays Churchill Cup finals day at Toyota Park, Chicago