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Faloon Names Ireland U-20 Men’s Squad For World Rugby U-20 Championship

Faloon Names Ireland U-20 Men’s Squad For World Rugby U-20 Championship

Evan O'Connell will captain the Ireland Under-20 Men's team in South Africa during the coming weeks ©INPHO/Ben Brady

Head coach Willie Faloon has named his 30-player Ireland Under-20 Men’s squad (sponsored by PwC) for the upcoming World Rugby Under-20 Championship in South Africa.

The global showpiece tournament for the Under-20 grade, taking place in the Cape Town region, runs over five match days from Saturday, June 29 to Friday, July 19.

Having led Ireland through the recent Under-20 Six Nations, Evan O’Connell has been named captain for the Championship, as Faloon’s side prepare to face Australia, Italy, and Georgia in Pool B.

O’Connell, Brian Gleeson, Danny Sheahan, Hugh Gavin, and Sam Berman are the five returning players from last year’s tournament, when Ireland finished as runners-up behind France.

Ireland open the 2024 World Rugby U-20 Championship against Six Nations rivals Italy on Saturday, June 29 (kick-off 4.30pm local time/3.30pm Irish time), at DHL Stadium in Cape Town.

They then face Georgia on Thursday, 4 July (kick-off 2pm local time/1pm Irish time), with that game taking place at Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch, and Australia are their opponents at Athlone Sports Stadium in Cape Town on Tuesday, 9 July (kick-off 2pm local time/1pm Irish time).

Speaking ahead of the squad’s departure for South Africa, Faloon said: “It is an exciting time for the squad as we prepare to depart for the World Rugby Under-20 Championship.

“It has been a competitive couple of weeks as the squad have pushed each other in preparation for the tournament, and we know we’ll need to grow and evolve as a team from the Six Nations for what will be a challenging couple of weeks against quality opposition in South Africa.”

Enda McDonagh, Managing Partner at PwC Ireland, added: “All of us at PwC are looking forward to the Under-20s’ campaign in South Africa this summer.

“The performance of the team throughout the Six Nations was memorable, and we wish Willie, Evan, and the squad the very best of luck throughout the course of the World Rugby U-20 Championship.”

World Rugby will confirm broadcast details for the World Rugby U-20 Championship shortly, while there will be coverage of Ireland’s progress throughout the tournament on IrishRugby.ie and Irish Rugby social media platforms.

IRELAND UNDER-20 MEN’S Squad (2024 World Rugby Under-20 Championship, Cape Town & Stellenbosch, South Africa, Saturday, June 29-Friday, July 19, 2024):

Player/Club/Province –

Backs (13):

Oliver Coffey (Blackrock College RFC/Leinster)
Jack Murphy (Clontarf FC/Leinster)
Hugo McLaughlin (Lansdowne FC/Leinster)
Hugh Gavin (Galwegians RFC/Connacht)
Wilhelm de Klerk (UCD RFC/Leinster)
Finn Treacy (Galwegians RFC/Connacht)
Ben O’Connor (UCC RFC/Munster)
Tadhg Brophy (Naas RFC/Leinster)
Sean Naughton (Galway Corinthians RFC/Connacht)
Sam Berman (Terenure College RFC/Leinster)
Davy Colbert (Dublin University FC/Leinster)
Ruben Moloney (UCD RFC/Leinster) *
Jake O’Riordan (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster) *

Forwards (17):

Alex Usanov (Clontarf FC/Leinster)
Stephen Smyth (Old Wesley RFC/Leinster)
Patreece Bell (Sale Sharks/IQ Rugby)
Alan Spicer (UCD RFC/Leinster)
Evan O’Connell (UL Bohemian RFC/Munster) (capt)
James McKillop (Queen’s University Belfast RFC/Ulster)
Max Flynn (Galway Corinthians RFC/Connacht) *
Brian Gleeson (Garryowen FC/Munster)
Emmet Calvey (Shannon RFC/Munster)
Danny Sheahan (Cork Constitution FC/Munster)
Jacob Boyd (Queen’s University Belfast RFC/Ulster)
Billy Corrigan (Old Wesley RFC/Leinster)
Sean Edogbo (UCC RFC/Munster)
Bryn Ward (Ballynahinch RFC/Ulster)
Luke Murphy (Shannon RFC/Munster)
Mikey Yarr (Lansdowne FC/Leinster) *
Andrew Sparrow (UCD RFC/Leinster)

* Denotes uncapped player at Under-20 level


POOL A: France (1), Wales (6), New Zealand (7), Spain (12)

POOL B: Ireland (2), Australia (5), Georgia (8), Italy (11)

POOL C: South Africa (3), England (4), Argentina (9), Fiji (10)

* Rankings based on last year’s placings (Spain won the 2023 U-20 Trophy)

Match Day 1: Saturday, June 29 – Pool B: Ireland v Italy, DHL Stadium, Cape Town, 4.30pm local time/3.30pm Irish time

Match Day 2: Thursday, July 4 – Pool B: Ireland v Georgia, Danie Craven Stadium, Stellenbosch, 2pm local time/1pm Irish time

Match Day 3: Tuesday, July 9 – Pool B: Ireland v Australia, Athlone Sports Stadium, Cape Town, 2pm local time/1pm Irish time

Match Day 4: Sunday, July 14 (Semi-finals and play-off matches)

Match Day 5: Friday, July 19 (Final and ranking matches)

For more information on the World Rugby U-20 Championship, click here.