Ireland Names Strong Side

Ireland has gone with its strongest available side to take on Italy on Sunday in the Rugby World Cup.  Paul O’Connell captains the side and is joined in the second row by Iain Henderson at the Olympic Stadium in London.  The backrow is made up of Jamie Heaslip at eighthman, Sean O’Brien at open-side and Peter O’Mahony at blindside.

Mike Ross returns to the front row along with Rory Best and Jack McGrath.  Conor Murray and Johnny Sexton are paired at half-back with Robbie Henshaw and Keith Earls in the centre.  The back three is made up of Simon Zebo at fullback with Tommy Bowe and Dave Kearney filling the wing positions.
 
Among the replacements are Sean Cronin, Cian Healy, Nathan White, Devin Toner, Chris Henry,Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan and Luke Fitzgerald.
 
The Ireland match day squad is as follows:
 
15. Simon Zebo (Cork Con/Munster)
14. Tommy Bowe (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)
13. Keith Earls (Young Munster/Munster)
12. Robbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Connacht)
11. Dave Kearney (Lansdowne/Leinster)
10. Johnny Sexton (St Mary’s/Leinster)
9. Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster)
8. Jamie Heaslip (Dublin University/Leinster)
7. Sean O’Brien (UCD/Leinster)
6. Peter O’Mahony (Cork Con/Munster)
5. Paul O’Connell (Young Munster) captain
4. Iain Henderson (Ballynahinch/Ulster)
3. Mike Ross (Clontarf/Leinster)
2. Rory Best (Banbridge/Ulster)
1. Jack McGrath (St Mary’s/Leinster)
 
Replacements:
16. Sean Cronin (St. Mary’s/Leinster)
17. Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)
18. Nathan White (Connacht)
19. Devin Toner (Lansdowne/Leinster)
20. Chris Henry (Malone/Ulster)
21. Eoin Reddan (Old Crescent/Leinster)
22. Ian Madigan (Blackrock/Leinster)
23. Luke Fitzgerald (Blackrock/Leinster)