Thursday 23 November 2017

O'Mahony rings the changes to club side

Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

DESPITE a stunning second-half display against England Counties last time out, Ireland's club international coach David O'Mahony has made a host of changes to his team for tonight's clash with their Scottish counterparts at Donnybrook (7.0).

Ireland found themselves 26-3 in arrears after a desperate first half against the English and, although they launched a stirring comeback after the restart, scoring four unanswered tries, they lost out 29-25.

UCC's John Ryan comes into the front row, alongside Ballymena prop Simon Shawe, who played in the inaugural club international back in 2006.

Hugh Hogan and Zack Farivarz step in for the injured duo Barry O'Mahony and Richie Leyden in the back row.

Clontarf's Killian Lett and Matt Healy from Lansdowne are also included but the all-Dolphin combination of captain Sam Cronin and No 10 Barry Keeshan continues at half-back.

Limerick Gaelic footballer Stephen Kelly, who touched down twice against England Counties, continues on the wing, while St Mary's Robin Copeland -- the top try scorer in the AIB League -- has been rewarded for his good domestic form and has been included on the bench alongside Young Munster skipper Ger Slattery.

IRELAND CLUB -- D O'Shea (Clontarf); M Healy (Lansdowne), E Moloney (Dolphin), K Lett (Clontarf), S Kelly (Shannon); B Keeshan (Dolphin), S Cronin (Dolphin); J Ryan (UCC), M Essex (Shannon), S Shawe (Ballymena); P Huntly (Blackrock Col), F Walsh (Shannon); H Hogan (St Mary's Col), Z Farivars (Blackrock Col), F Cogan (Cork Constitution). Reps: G Slattery (Young Munster), C Condon (Dolphin), S Crawford (Clontarf), R Copeland (St Mary's Col), C Sheridan (UL Bohemians), D Fitzpatrick (Blackrock Col), S Scanlon (UCC).

Scotland club -- F Harkness; J Fleming, M Clapperton, J King, F Thomson; S Wight, R Sneddon; G Reid, F Gillies, A Hamilton; D Kelly, R McKay; J Dalziel, M Cairns, R Weston Reps: G Wood, A Dymock, S Sutherland, A Dunlop, G Wilson, A MacMahon, C Ferguson

Irish Independent

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