Ireland make nine changes for Fiji test as Henshaw returns

Ireland make nine changes for Fiji test as Henshaw returns

DUBLIN : Ireland made nine changes to the side that beat South Africa last weekend for Saturday’s visit of Fiji, with centre Robbie Henshaw fit again, Jeremy Loughman handed a debut and fellow prop Tadhg Furlong captaining the side for the first time.

With their final November test against Australia next week, coach Andy Farrell was always likely to make wholesale changes but still named a team with plenty of experience and players likely headed to next year’s World Cup.

After an injury ruled Henshaw out the day before the 19-16 win over South Africa, the Leinster man gets a run out ahead of the Wallabies test and will partner Stuart McCloskey, whose impressive start last week was cut short by a first half knock.

Jimmy O’Brien, who made an assured debut off the bench in place of McCloskey in Saturday’s bruising encounter, makes his first start at fullback while Leinster team mate Joey Carbery comes in at flyhalf with Johnny Sexton rested.

The sole debut goes to Munster loosehead Loughman, who was called up to last year’s Six Nations squad and travelled on the recent tour to New Zealand. Ulster’s Kieran Treadwell and Nick Timoney are also given the chance to impress in an otherwise well seasoned pack.

Young Munster flyhalf Jack Crowley and Connacht flanker Cian Prendergast, both 22, look set for their first taste of international rugby off the bench.

Ireland team

15. Jimmy O’Brien (Leinster) 1 cap14. Robert Baloucoune (Ulster) 3 caps13. Robbie Henshaw (Leinster) 60 caps12. Stuart McCloskey (Ulster) 7 caps11. Mack Hansen (Connacht) 7 caps10. Joey Carbery (Munster) 36 caps9. Jamison Gibson Park (Leinster) 21 caps1. Jeremy Loughman (Munster) No caps2. Rob Herring (Ulster) 29 caps3. Tadhg Furlong (Leinster, captain) 61 caps4. Kieran Treadwell (Ulster) 9 caps5. Tadhg Beirne (Munster) 34 caps6. Caelan Doris (Leinster) 21 caps7. Nick Timoney (Ulster) 2 caps8. Jack Conan (Leinster) 31 caps

Replacements16. Dan Sheehan (Leinster) 11 caps17. Cian Healy (Leinster) 119 caps18. Tom O’Toole (Ulster) 3 caps19. Cian Prendergast (Connacht) No caps20. Max Deegan (Leinster/) 1 cap21. Craig Casey (Munster) 5 caps22. Jack Crowley (Munster) No caps23. Garry Ringrose (Leinster/UCD) 45 caps

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *