Jump to main content


PWC logo

Five Changes For Ireland Under-20s’ Clash With South Africa

Five Changes For Ireland Under-20s’ Clash With South Africa

Head coach Noel McNamara has named the Ireland Under-20 team, sponsored by PwC, to face South Africa in Sunday’s second round of the World Rugby U-20 Championship in Narbonne (kick-off 4.30pm local time/3.30pm Irish time).

There are five changes to the side that started the 26-24 defeat to tournament hosts France on Wednesday night, with World Rugby U-20 Championship debutant James Hume joining four of the replacements used in midweek – Conor Dean, Jonny Stewart, Sean O’Brien and Cormac Daly – in the starting XV.

The front row remains unchanged with Naas prop Jordan Duggan, who was a late inclusion for the injured James French on Wednesday, packing down alongside hooker Diarmuid Barron and tighthead Jack Aungier.

Google Ad Manager – 300×250 – In Article

Clontarf clubman Daly comes in for his first World Championship start alongside Jack Dunne in the second row, with the back row again consisting of Joe Dunleavy, who was Ireland’s opening try scorer against the French, Matthew Agnew and number 8 and captain Caelan Doris.

Dean and Stewart, who wins his 16th Ireland U-20 cap, swap in at half-back with Harry Byrne and Hugh O’Sullivan making way, while Stewart’s Ulster Academy colleague Hume pairs up with Tommy O’Brien in the centre.

Sean O’Brien, who was a 27th-minute injury replacement against France, keeps his place in a back-three that also includes Michael Silvester and Tom Roche, and UCC prop Bryan O’Connor, a late addition to the matchday squad the last day, is standing by to make his debut off the bench.

Speaking ahead of the round 2 encounter with the Junior ‘Boks, Noel McNamara said: “I think everyone was disappointed that we didn’t come away with the win on Wednesday night, but we’ve taken the positives from the game and looked forward to tomorrow’s match.

“South Africa (who were 33-27 winners against Georgia in the first round) are a big and physical team so we’re expecting a big battle tomorrow, but one the players are really looking forward to.”

Meanwhile, the Ireland Under-20s’ injury list grew following the France game with prop French and winger Dan Hurley both sustaining tournament-ending knee injuries. They have been replaced in the squad by uncapped front rower Jakub Wojtkowicz, who helped Sligo win Ulster Bank League Division 2C this season, and Lansdowne’s Peter Sullivan who won two caps during Ireland’s U-20 Six Nations campaign.

Sunday’s Pool C showdown will be broadcast live on eir Sport 2 in the Republic of Ireland and online in non-geo blocked locations via World Rugby’s Facebook page and www.worldrugby.org. For more information on the tournament, click here.

IRELAND UNDER-20 Team & Replacements (v South Africa Under-20s, 2018 World Rugby U-20 Championship Pool C, Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l’Amitie, Narbonne, Sunday, June 3, kick-off 4.30pm local time/3.30pm Irish time):

15. Michael Silvester (Dublin University/Leinster)
14. Tom Roche (Lansdowne/Leinster)
13. Tommy O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)
12. James Hume (Banbridge/Ulster)
11. Sean O’Brien (Clontarf/Leinster)
10. Conor Dean (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
9. Jonny Stewart (Queen’s University/Ulster)
1. Jordan Duggan (Naas/Leinster)
2. Diarmuid Barron (Garryowen/Munster)
3. Jack Aungier (St. Mary’s College/Leinster)
4. Cormac Daly (Clontarf/Leinster)
5. Jack Dunne (Dublin University/Leinster)
6. Joe Dunleavy (Malone/Ulster)
7. Matthew Agnew (Ballymena/Ulster)
8. Caelan Doris (St. Mary’s College/Leinster) (capt)


16. Dan Sheehan (Dublin University/Leinster) 
17. Bryan O’Connor (UCC/Munster) *
18. Joe Byrne (Dublin University/Leinster) 
19. Charlie Ryan (UCD/Leinster)
20. Aaron Hall (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
21. Hugh O’Sullivan (Clontarf/Leinster)
22. Harry Byrne (UCD/Leinster)
23. James McCarthy (UL Bohemians/Munster)

* Denotes uncapped player at this level

IRELAND U-20s’ World Rugby Championship Results/Fixtures:

Pool C –

France 26 Ireland 24
Stade Aimé-Giral, Perpignan, Wednesday, May 30

South Africa v Ireland (live eir Sport 2)
Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l’Amitie, Narbonne, Sunday, June 3, 4.30pm local time/3.30pm Irish time

Ireland v Georgia (live eir Sport 2)
Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l’Amitie, Narbonne, Thursday, June 7, 6.30pm local time/5.30pm Irish time

Semi-Finals –
Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l’Amitie, Narbonne or Stade Aimé-Giral, Perpignan, Tuesday, June 12

Finals –
Stade de la Mediterranee, Béziers, Sunday, June 17