For the first time since 2007 no Ulster player is named in the starting team ahead of round two of Australia v Ireland.
Rob Herring and John Cooney are however, the sole representatives in the extended squad as both occupy a spot on the replacement’s bench.
Joe Schmidt has named five changes in the pack with a new front row set to take the field tomorrow. Cian Healy starts at loosehead and is joined by Munster’s Niall Scannell and Leinster’s Tadhg Furlong at hooker and tighthead prop respectively. Devin Toner replaces Iain Henderson in the second row and partners James Ryan. Dan Leavy comes in for Ulster-bound Jordi Murphy in the only back row change. Peter O’Mahony and CJ Stander remain at 6 and 8 respectively.
Johnny Sexton is restored to the starting 15 and forms the ever reliable partnership with Conor Murray. Bundee Aki drops out to accommodate Garry Ringrose in the centre. Robbie Henshaw moves to inside centre with his provincial team mate taking the 13 jersey. Keith Earls moves to the left wing and Andrew Conway is named on the right wing in replace of Jacob Stockdale. Rob Kearney remains at full back.
Ireland fell to a David Pocock-inspired Wallabies side last week as the hosts dominated Ireland at the breakdown. The inclusion of Dan Leavy at blindside flanker and Tadhg Beirne on the bench gives Ireland the needed firepower to compete against Pocock and Michael Hooper.
Hopefully we will see John Cooney get some action off the bench. Ireland have plenty of options at scrum half including Cooney, Luke McGrath and Kieran Marmion, but all have limited playing experience in the international jersey. All three are decent players and have the potential to be vital replacements if the worst happens to Conor Murray ahead of the World Cup next year.
Not only do Ireland need to save the series with a win tomorrow, but a loss allows Australia to take second spot in the world rankings.
The FRU predicts: I reckon Ireland will level the series up tomorrow. Johnny Sexton will bring composure while Leavy will be a threat at the break down. Ireland by 10 points.
|Israel Folau||15||Rob Kearney|
|Dane Haylett-Petty||14||Andrew Conway|
|Samu Kerevi||13||Garry Ringrose|
|Kurtley Beale||12||Robbie Henshaw|
|Marika Koroibete||11||Keith Earls|
|Bernard Foley||10||Johnny Sexton|
|Will Genia||9||Conor Murray|
|Scott Sio||1||Cian Healy|
|Brandon Paenga-Amosa||2||Niall Scannell|
|Sekope Kepu||3||Tadhg Furlong|
|Izack Rodda||4||James Ryan|
|Adam Coleman||5||Devin Toner|
|David Pocock||6||Peter O’Mahony|
|Michael Hooper||7||Dan Leavy|
|Caleb Timu||8||CJ Stander|
|Tolu Latu||16||Rob Herring|
|Tom Robertson||17||Jack McGrath|
|Taniela Tupou||18||Andrew Porter|
|Rob Simmons||19||Tadhg Beirne|
|Lukhan Lealaiauloto-Tui||20||Jordi Murphy|
|Pete Samu||21||John Cooney|
|Nick Phipps||22||Joey Carbery|
|Reece Hodge||23||Jordan Larmour|