A 26-man Emerging Ireland squad, consisting of 19 uncapped players was named on Monday ahead of the IRB Nations Cup in Romania during June.
Head coach, Dan McFarland (Connacht), who is assisted by ULster’s Neil Doak, has a strong side, with experience included with Ulster’s Craig Gilroy and Paul Marshall included along with Munster’s Tommy O’Donnell and Leinster’s Mike McCarthy, who will captain the side.
Ireland have three games in the tournament, opening against Russia on Friday, June 13. They will then face Uruguay on Wednesday June 18 and conclude against hosts Romania on Sunday June 22. All games will be played in Stadionul National Arcul de Triumf.
McFarland, commented, “I am looking forward to working with Neil and this exciting group of players in what will be a highly competitive tournament. It is a great opportunity for players to showcase their abilities and represent their country.”
Joe Schmidt, Ireland Head Coach, added, “There is a good mix of experienced and younger players in this squad.
“They will face three tough fixtures as Romania have already qualified for RWC14 and both Uruguay and Russia are in the final stages of the Repechage for World Cup qualification.”
Players from last year’s Emerging Ireland squad who have subsequently been capped for Ireland include Dave Kearney, Jack McGrath, Marty Moore and Jordi Murphy and a total of six from last year’s Emerging Ireland squad¹ will travel with the Senior team to Argentina.
Emerging Ireland Squad (*uncapped player)
Niall Annett (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)*
Rodney Ah You (Buccaneers/Connacht)*
Michael Bent (Dublin University/Leinster)
Callum Black (Malone/Ulster)*
Paddy Butler (Shannon/Munster)*
Bryan Byrne (Clontarf/Leinster)*
Robin Copeland (Cardiff Blues)*
Sean Dougall (Dolphin/ Munster)*
David Foley (UL Bohemians/Munster)*
Mick Kearney (Clontarf/Connacht)*
Mike McCarthy (Lansdowne/Leinster) (capt)
Tommy O’Donnell (UL Bohemians/Munster)
Dominic Ryan (Lansdowne/Leinster)*
John Ryan (Cork Constitution/Munster)*
James Tracy (UCD/Leinster)*
Michael Allen (Belfast Harlequins/Ulster)*
Andrew Conway (Blackrock College/Leinster)*
Craig Gilroy (Dungannon/Ulster)
Eoin Griffin (Galwegians/Connacht)*
JJ Hanrahan (UL Bohemians/Munster)*
Ian Keatley (Young Munster/Munster)
Brendan Macken (Blackrock College/Leinster)*
Paul Marshall (Ballymena/Ulster)
Luke McGrath (UCD/Leinster)*
Johne Murphy (Young Munster/Munster)*
Noel Reid (Clontarf/Leinster)*