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Ireland name same starting team but abandon the six/two bench split

By Liam Heagney
Ireland celebrate one of James Lowe's two tries against England last weekend (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Andy Farrell’s Ireland will take on Scotland this Saturday with a team showing no changes from the XV beaten in England last weekend, but the head coach has altered two of his bench and reintroduced a five/three forwards/backs split.

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A last-gasp 22-23 loss on London put an end to Irish hopes of going for an unprecedented back-to-back Guinness Six Nations Grand Slam triumph when they host the Scots in Dublin, but they are still in pole position to claim their second successive championship title as they top the table by four points ahead of the English.

With Calvin Nash coming right after his early game-ending concussion, Farrell has rolled out the same starting XV from Twickenham but there are alterations to his bench.

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Jerry Flannery on the foundations Jacques Nienaber put in place with the Boks

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Jerry Flannery on the foundations Jacques Nienaber put in place with the Boks

Jerry Flannery says he will be a “poor imitation” if he tries to copy Jacques Nienaber’s style of coaching.

Having gone with an extra forward in a six/two split in London, the head coach has switched to a five-three formation this weekend. Iain Henderson is the forward to make way for midfielder Garry Ringrose to come onto a bench that also includes Harry Byrne in place of Ciaran Frawley, another player who suffered a concussion versus England.

Scotland earlier named a team showing two changes from their loss away to Italy. Stafford McDowell will start at inside centre with Cameron Redpath dropping to the bench. He is joined there by George Horne, who lost his starting spot at scrum-half to the promoted Ali Price.

Fixture
Six Nations
Ireland
17 - 13
Full-time
Scotland
All Stats and Data

As regards the bench, the Scots had a six/two forwards/backs split in Rome but they have also chosen a five/three divide for Dublin with back-rower Jamie Ritchie omitted to accommodate the demoted Redpath as the third back. The one other change to the replacements is Rory Sutherland as sub loosehead instead of Alec Hepburn.

Ireland (vs Scotland, Saturday)
15. Hugo Keenan (UCD/Leinster)(39)
14. Calvin Nash (Young Munster/Munster)(5)
13. Robbie Henshaw (Buccaneers/Leinster)(71)
12. Bundee Aki (Galwegians/Connacht)(55)
11. James Lowe (Leinster)(30)
10. Jack Crowley (Cork Constitution/Munster)(13)
9. Jamison Gibson-Park (Leinster)(34)
1. Andrew Porter (UCD/Leinster)(63)
2. Dan Sheehan (Lansdowne/Leinster)(25)
3. Tadhg Furlong (Clontarf/Leinster)(75)
4. Joe McCarthy (Dublin University/Leinster)(9)
5. Tadhg Beirne (Lansdowne/Munster)(49)
6. Peter O’Mahony (Cork Constitution/Munster)(captain)(104)
7. Josh van der Flier (UCD/Leinster)(61)
8. Caelan Doris (St Mary’s College/Leinster)(40)

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Replacements:
16. Rónan Kelleher (Lansdowne/Leinster)(30)
17. Cian Healy (Clontarf/Leinster)(128)
18. Finlay Bealham (Buccaneers/Connacht)(39)
19. Ryan Baird (Dublin University/Leinster)(19)
20. Jack Conan (Old Belvedere/Leinster)(45)
21. Conor Murray (Garryowen/Munster)(115)
22. Harry Byrne (UCD/Leinster)(3)
23. Garry Ringrose (UCD/Leinster)(57)

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Comments

1 Comment
T
Turlough 120 days ago

Farrell needs to be more ruthless. Playing O’Mahony ahead of Ryan Baird again will not look smart if he underplays or gets carded again trying to compensate for last week. What is Conor Murray doing on the bench? He is there for experience in the big matches. He has failed in his last two outings under real pressure in big matches (NZ, England). You have to bring in someone else now surely. We have

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