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Debutants Dean And Barron Included In Ireland U-20 Team

Debutants Dean And Barron Included In Ireland U-20 Team

Head coach Peter Malone has finalised the Ireland Under-20 team, sponsored by PwC, to play Italy in Wednesday’s opening Pool B match at the World Rugby U-20 Championship in Kutaisi, Georgia (kick-off 3.30pm local time/12.30pm Irish time – live on eir Sport 1).

There are six personnel changes to the Ireland Under-20 side that was pipped by England in March’s final round of the U-20 Six Nations  – most of them enforced due to a number of untimely injuries.

With Jordan Larmour, Tommy O’Brien and Bill Johnston all missing the tournament through injury, Dublin University duo Jack Kelly and Colm Hogan return to the back-three, while St. Mary’s young gun Conor Dean, a son of former Ireland and Lions out-half and current Ireland senior team manager Paul Dean, will make his U-20 debut in the number 10 jersey.

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Up front, Garryowen hooker Diarmuid Barron, a late addition to the Irish squad, is the only new cap, slotting in beside props Joey Conway and Charlie Connolly. John Foley and Caelan Doris, who both started against England, are nursing knocks at the moment, so Marcus Rea of Queen’s University and Young Munster’s Gavin Coombes join newly-appointed captain Paul Boyle in the back row.

Forwards Peter Cooper and Sean Masterson come back into the matchday 23 as replacements, with the selected bench also including Angus Curtis, who impressed at out-half recently for the Ireland U-19s, and fellow U-20 debutant Alan Tynan – one of the real success stories of Young Munster’s Ulster Bank League campaign.

Ireland U-20 head coach Peter Malone, who is assisted by Kieran Campbell, said: “The U-20 World Championship is always an exciting competition and we are looking forward to the challenge ahead of us.

“We’re looking forward to the game against Italy and starting the tournament. Having played them a few months ago in the Six Nations, we know they are not a team to be underestimated, but the team are excited, focused and determined to make a good start.”

Back in February, Ireland emerged with a hard-fought 27-26 victory over the Italians in Prato, with backs Larmour (2) and O’Brien running in a trio of second half tries. eir Sport will broadcast Ireland’s games in Georgia, while ITV are also televising the tournament and there will be live streaming for certain countries on the World Rugby website.

IRELAND UNDER-20 Team & Replacements (v Italy Under-20s, 2017 World Rugby U-20 Championship Pool B, Kutaisi Stadium, Kutaisi, Georgia, Wednesday, May 31, kick-off 3.30pm local time/12.30pm Irish time):

15. Jack Kelly (Dublin University/Leinster)
14. Colm Hogan (Dublin University/Munster)
13. Gavin Mullin (UCD/Leinster)
12. Ciaran Frawley (UCD/Leinster)
11. Calvin Nash (Young Munster/Munster)
10. Conor Dean (St. Mary’s College/Leinster) *
9. Jonny Stewart (Queen’s University/Ulster)
1. Joey Conway (UL Bohemians/Munster)
2. Diarmuid Barron (Garryowen/Munster) *
3. Charlie Connolly (Dublin University/Leinster)
4. Fineen Wycherley (Young Munster/Munster)
5. Oisin Dowling (Lansdowne/Leinster)
6. Marcus Rea (Queen’s University/Ulster)
7. Paul Boyle (Lansdowne/Leinster) (capt)
8. Gavin Coombes (Young Munster/Munster)


16. Ronan Kelleher (UCD/Leinster)
17. Greg McGrath (Lansdowne/Leinster)
18. Peter Cooper (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
19. Jack Regan (UCD/Leinster)
20. Sean Masterson (Corinthians/Connacht)
21. Jack Stafford (Shannon/Munster)
22. Angus Curtis (Queen’s University/Ulster) *
23. Alan Tynan (Young Munster/Munster) *

* Denotes uncapped player at U-20 level

IRELAND U-20s’ World Rugby Championship Fixtures: 

Pool B –

Ireland v Italy
Kutaisi Stadium, Kutaisi, Wednesday, May 31, 3.30pm local time/12.30pm Irish time

Ireland v Scotland
Kutaisi Stadium, Kutaisi, Sunday, June 4, 1pm local time/10am Irish time

Ireland v New Zealand
Kutaisi Stadium, Kutaisi, Thursday, June 8, 3.30pm local time/12.30pm Irish time

Semi-Finals –
Avchala Stadium or Mikheil Meskhi Stadium, Tbilisi, Tuesday, June 13

Play-Offs –
Avchala Stadium or Mikheil Meskhi Stadium, Tbilisi, Sunday, June 18

2017 World Rugby U-20 Championship – Full Fixtures/Pools