Malone and Ulster’s Stewart Moore aims to make up for lost time as Ireland target World Championship

Ireland U20 and Ulster centre Stewart Moore
Ireland U20 and Ulster centre Stewart Moore
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Malone’s Stewart Moore is hoping he can make an impact when he plays in Ireland U20’s opening Junior World Championship pool match against England today.

Grand Slam Six Nations champions Ireland are hoping they can defeat the baby Roses again this year and get their tough Pool B campaign off to the perfect start in Santa Fe Argentina.

Moore is one of five Ulster players named in coach Noel McNamara’s starting team for today’s game.

Centre Moore is joined in the backline by Queen’s winger Angus Kernohan and fullback, Ballynahinch’s Iwan Hughes.

In the backrow, Ballymena’s Azur Allison will start at No 8 with Banbridge’s David McCann at blindside flanker.

It means a lot to the 19-year-old Moore to be involved as he puts a frustrating period behind him.

Having been selected for the Six Nations panel, concussion issue ruled Moore out of the Championship. He also had to contend with a medial collateral ligament injury in recent months, before regaining full fitness.

Speaking at last month’s squad announcement at the PwC offices in Dublin.

“It was concussion and I was out for three months, so that was me missing the Six Nations,” revealed Moore.

“I came back and played a few AIL games for Malone and got injured again and then eventually made it back now.

“I was obviously jealous (to miss the Six Nations), but it was great for the lads.

“I have trained with them and played with them and played against them and just watching them go out there was class.

“I had no doubts about them against England or France. I knew they were going to do it.”

Returning to selection for the opening game for the young Greens, McNamara has the familiar front-row of Josh Wycherley, Dylan Tierny-Martin and Tom Clarkson starting against the English.

Packing down behind in them in the second-row are captain Charlie Ryan and Ryan Baird.

John Hodnett joins the Ulster duo in the backrow, while Craig Casey starts at scrumhalf alongside his Shannon clubmate Jake Flannery, at outhalf.

Liam Turner partners Moore in the midfield and Jonathan Wren completes the back three.

World Rugby has introduced a change to how replacements can be used for the U20 World Championships, with the remaining squad members outside of the starting XV all allowed to be named on the match day panel.

McNamara said: “We arrived into Santa Fe last Thursday and the players have settled in really well.

“They’ve focused on their recovery after the travel and are now looking forward to taking the field and getting things underway.

“We know from the Six Nations that England are a good side, and they have a lot of tradition in this tournament, but the primary focus is ourselves and what we control on the day.”

Ireland share Pool B with Australia, England and Italy and games will be shown live on eir Sport in the Republic of Ireland, with ITV holding UK TV rights. If games are not shown live on TV, they will be streamed via World Rugby Online Channels.

The Ireland v England game has a 7.30pm kick-off (BST).