The Ireland Under-18 Schools team, sponsored by PwC, has been announced ahead of their crucial game against Scotland Under-18s in Glasgow on Sunday.
The match is a qualifying game for the FIRA/AER Under-18 European Championship, which takes place in the Armagnac-Bigorre region of France between April 15 and 24.
The Ireland Under-18 Schools team were defeated by England in the first qualifying fixture back in December, so this game is important in deciding which section of the FIRA-AER tournament they qualify for.
Scotland beat England 26-21 in Leeds last weekend, so the Ireland side now need a bonus point win and to deny Scotland a bonus point to ensure qualification for the elite section.
Ireland head coach Terry McMaster knows that his team will have to put in a big performance to overcome a Scottish side that will be brimming with confidence after their win over England.
“Scotland showed they are a team with plenty of talent by overcoming England on home soil, so it puts it into perspective as our lads need to deliver a performance against the Scots that is of the highest order,” he said.
“To put one over a strong England team in those circumstances demands respect. In saying that, I think there is plenty of talent in our own side.
“While this is a new team coming up against a Scotland side that already has a game under their belt, our team has plenty of knowledge of each other in specific units, through playing together as part of their own schools teams, to knit quickly enough.
“The key is to deliver accuracy on their individual areas and the collective will look after itself.”
IRELAND UNDER-18 SCHOOLS Team & Replacements (v Scotland Under-18s, FIRA-AER Championship Qualifier, Braidholm RFC, Glasgow, Sunday, April 3, kick-off 12pm):
15 – Jack Fitzpatrick (Gonzaga College)
14 – Conor McEllin (Blackrock College)
13 – Robert Henshaw (Marist Athlone)
12 – Chris Farrell (Campbell College)
11 – Cian O’Halloran (CBC Cork)
10 – Rory Scannell (PBC Cork)
9 – Luke McGrath (St. Michael’s College) (capt)
1 – Gordon Frayne (Clongowes Wood College)
2 – Bryan Byrne (Clongowes Wood College)
3 – Edward Byrne (Clongowes Wood College)
4 – Jerry Sexton (St. Mary’s College)
5 – Donogh Lawler (St. Michael’s College)
6 – Mark Best (Campbell College)
7 – Dan Leavy (St. Michael’s College)
8 – Ryan Murphy (PBC Cork)
16 – Andrew Murphy (St. Michael’s College)
17 – Thomas Ferrari (Sligo Grammar School)
18 – Chris Taylor (Wallace High School)
19 – Luke Satchwell (The King’s Hospital)
20 – Ben Alexander (RBAI)
21 – David Shanahan (Belvedere College)
22 – Stuart Olding (Belfast Royal Academy)
23 – Rory Scholes (Campbell College)
Ireland U-18 Schools Management Team:
Terry McMaster – Head Coach
Kenny Hooks – Assistant Coach
Paul Barr – Assistant Coach
Lorcan Balfe – Team Manager
Chris Shields – Strength & Conditioning Coach
Ozzie Fogarty – Team Doctor
David Lyons – Team Physio
Vinny Hammond – Team Analyst
Jessica O’Brien – Team Co-ordinator