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Ireland Team To Play France

Ireland Team To Play France

Ireland coach Declan Kidney has named the team to play France in the defending champions’ second match of the 2010 RBS 6 Nations Championship in Paris on Saturday (kick-off 5.30pm local time/4.30pm Irish time).

Keith Earls, a second half replacement in the 29-11 win over Italy, has been selected on the left wing in place of Andrew Trimble.

The Ulsterman picked up a hamstring strain in last Saturday’s game but trained successfully today and could yet feature on the bench against France.

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In the second row, Leo Cullen has been named to start as Donncha O’Callaghan has not recovered from the knee injury that ruled him out of the RBS 6 Nations opener against Italy.

A vacancy have been left at blindside flanker pending confirmation of the fitness of Stephen Ferris (knee).

Ferris took part in training with the squad today but a final decision will be made on Thursday.

The seven replacements will also be finalised on Thursday from the possible nine players named today.

Speaking at the team announcement press conference, head coach Declan Kidney said: “Keith went very well against South Africa, he didn’t do anything wrong in December-January.

“And so I explained to them that I wanted to give Andrew a go to see how he went last week. I thought he went well, but Keith hadn’t done anything wrong, so I believe he deserves his go here now.

“Donncha trained this morning, but he just wasn’t deemed right to take the pitch on Saturday. He was the one that was pulled out.”

IRELAND Team & Replacements (v France, RBS 6 Nations Championship, Stade de France, Saturday, February 13, kick-off 5.30pm local time/4.30pm Irish time):

15 – Rob Kearney (UCD/Leinster)
14 – Tommy Bowe (Ospreys)
13 – Brian O’Driscoll (UCD/Leinster) (capt)
12 – Gordon D’Arcy (Lansdowne/Leinster)
11 – Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster)
10 – Ronan O’Gara (Cork Constitution/Munster)
9 – Tomas O’Leary (Dolphin/Munster)
1 – Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)
2 – Jerry Flannery (Shannon/Munster)
3 – John Hayes (Bruff/Munster)
4 – Leo Cullen (Blackrock College/Leinster)
5 – Paul O’Connell (Young Munster/Munster)
6 – AN Other
7 – David Wallace (Garryowen/Munster)
8 – Jamie Heaslip (Naas/Leinster)

Replacements (from):

Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster)
Tom Court (Malone/Ulster)
Donnacha Ryan (Shannon/Munster)
Sean O’Brien (Clontarf/Leinster)
Kevin McLaughlin (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
Eoin Reddan (Lansdowne/Leinster)
Jonathan Sexton (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
Paddy Wallace (Ballymena/Ulster)
Andrew Trimble (Ballymena/Ulster)