The Ireland Under-18 Clubs team to face England Under-18 Clubs and Schools in Ashbourne RFC on Saturday has been named (KO:2pm), with head coach Wayne Mitchell making four personnel changes and three positional switches to the side that lost 25-0 to Scotland recently…
The Ireland youngsters, captained once again by Gorey centre James Nolan, who is one of eight Leinster players in the starting line-up.
Conor O’Brien, who impressed as a replacement against the Scots, will don the number 10 jersey as he did for last month’s 16-all draw with Italy at the County Meath venue.
Sean O’Hagan moves from out-half to replace Cathal Evans at full-back, with Harlequins’ Sam Arnold, one of five Exiles players in the starting line-up, slotting in at outside centre alongside skipper Nolan.
Interestingly, Arnold’s Cranleigh school-mate Charlie Piper will be lining out at hooker for the English side this weekend.
Galwegians clubman Conor Kyne comes back into the Irish front row at loosehead prop with Brendan Quinlan from Clanwilliam positioned on the tighthead side of the scrum.
Wexford’s Colm Joyce-Ahearne moves into the second row where he links up with Kieran Treadwell, with Joyce-Ahearne’s position in the back row filled by Andrew Purcell from Mullingar.
Saturday’s match, which was originally due to take place at Coolmine RFC, has been moved to Ashbourne instead.
It is the third game of four fixtures for the young Ireland squad which is coached by Wayne Mitchell, Colm McMahon and Jamie Turkington. They wrap up the campaign by hosting France next week.
IRELAND UNDER-18 CLUBS:
15. Sean O’Hagan (London Irish/Exile)
14. Anthony McGivney (Mullingar)
13. Sam Arnold (Harlequins/Exile)
12. James Nolan (Gorey) CAPTAIN
11. Robert Vallejo (New Ross)
10. Conor O’Brien (Mullingar)
9. Jack Cullen (Saracens/Exile)
1. Conor Kyne (Galwegians)
2. Jack McKenna (Wicklow)
3. Brendan Quinlan (Clanwilliam)
4. Colm Joyce-Ahearne (Wexford)
5. Kieran Treadwell (Harlequins/Exile)
6. Andrew Purcell (Mullingar)
7. Conor Oliver (Skerries)
8. Lorcan Dow (London Irish/Exile)
16. Niall Hannon (Mullingar)
17. Liam Walshe (Wicklow)
18. Harry Hester (Navan)
19. Aaron Hogan (Youghal)
20. Idrs Rqibi (Skibbereen)
21. Joey Carberry (Athy)
22. Sean Moran (Kilkenny)
23. Cathal Evans (Corinthians)