Eight new faces in Ireland squad for USA, Japan

Tue, 16 May 2017 14:04
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SQUAD ANNOUNCEMENT: Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt named eight uncapped players in his 31-man squad for next month's tour of the United States and Japan.

With 11 players on British and Irish Lions duty, eight new faces have been brought in namely; John Cooney, Dave Heffernan, Rory O'Loughlin, Andrew Porter, James Ryan, Rory Scannell, Jacob Stockdale and Kieran Treadwell.

Ireland play the Unites States Eagles in New Jersey on June 10 before two Tests against Japan, who will host the 2019 World Cup and play Ireland in the pool phase, in Shizuoka on June 17 and Tokyo on June 24.

"With 11 players due to tour with the British and Irish Lions, plus a number of injuries to experienced internationals, the summer tour squad includes plenty of youth," Schmidt said in a press release.

"There is a real freshness to the group, including the coaching staff, so we're looking forward to what will be a very challenging summer tour.

"We have retained a sprinkling of experienced players, some of whom may yet be called up to the Lions, but the focus is really on challenging the younger players to cope with the heat and foreign conditions as well as the speed and physicality of test rugby,"

One additional player will be added to the squad following this weekend's domestic matches.

The tour will also see three young Irish coaches spend time with the team in the shape of Leinster's Girvan Dempsey, Munster's Felix Jones and former Ireland great Ronan O'Gara of Racing 92.

Ireland squad: Finlay Bealham , Joey Carbery , Jack Conan , Andrew Conway , John Cooney , Keith Earls, Cian Healy, Dave Heffernan , Paddy Jackson, Dave Kilcoyne, Dan Leavy, Kieran Marmion , Luke Marshall, Luke McGrath, Tommy O'Donnell, Jack O'Donoghue, Tiernan O'Halloran , Rory O'Loughlin, Andrew Porter, Garry Ringrose , Rhys Ruddock , James Ryan , John Ryan , Niall Scannell , Rory Scannell , Jacob Stockdale , Devin Toner , James Tracy , Kieran Treadwell , Josh van der Flier , Simon Zebo

Agence France-Presse