The Ireland Men’s Sevens coaches have confirmed the make-up of the squad to travel to the Netherlands this weekend to compete at the Amsterdam 7s.
The Ireland side made the semi-final stage of the tournament in Amsterdam last season, but will be hoping for a higher finish this time around.
The selected squad for this weekend includes combination of both provincial Academy and Ulster Bank League players. Ian Fitzpatrick and Jimmy O’Brien, who are part of the Leinster Academy, are named along with Nick Timoney of Ulster and Munster’s Shane Daly, Steve McMahon and Greg O’Shea.
Fitzpatrick’s Lansdowne team-mates John O’Donnell (pictured below) and Mark Roche complete the headquarter club’s representation, while Bryan Mollen will represent his club Dublin University.
Buccaneers’ Shane Layden and Fionn Carr from Naas are the other Ulster Bank League players in the squad, while Steve Toal-Lennon, who is based in London, has been working with the IQ Sevens programme.
The Amsterdam 7s, which will feature other international sides such as China, Italy and Poland, will be the final warm-up event for the Ireland Men before the travel to Moscow for the first leg of the Rugby Europe Grand Prix Series on June 3-4.
Moscow will be the first of four tournaments that make up the Grand Prix Series, the others being Lodz in Poland, St. Etienne in France and Exeter in England. The series offers Ireland the opportunity to qualify for the World Rugby Sevens Series Repechage next season in Hong Kong, as well as the 2018 Rugby World Cup Sevens tournament in San Francisco next summer.
On confirming the squad, the IRFU’s Director of Sevens Rugby, Anthony Eddy, said: “We’ve had the players in for a number of training sessions over the last few weeks and they are coming together well as a squad.
“They got the season off to a positive, winning the Dublin 7s, so we’ll look to keep building that momentum this weekend. The invitational sides that compete at these Sevens tournaments are always quite strong, so it will be a good test for us before heading to Moscow next week.”
IRELAND MEN’S SEVENS Squad (Amsterdam 7s Tournament, Saturday, May 27-Sunday, May 28):
Fionn Carr (Naas)
Shane Daly (Cork Constitution/Munster)
Ian Fitzpatrick (Lansdowne/Leinster)
Shane Layden (Buccaneers)
Steve McMahon (Garryowen/Munster)
Bryan Mollen (Dublin University)
Jimmy O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)
John O’Donnell (Lansdowne)
Greg O’Shea (Shannon/Munster)
Mark Roche (Lansdowne)
Steve Toal-Lennon (IQ Sevens)
Nick Timoney (Queen’s University/Ulster)
For more information on the Amsterdam 7s tournament, visit the tournament website.