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Irish prop Conán O'Donnell named in same Mitre 10 Cup squad as Kieran Read

The 24-year-old Sligo man first moved to New Zealand last year.

IRISH PROP CONÁN O’Donnell has been named in the Counties Manukau squad for the upcoming Mitre 10 Cup in New Zealand.

O’Donnell played for the Steelers in last year’s competition and has returned to their set-up as part of a 2020 squad that also includes former All Blacks captain Kieran Read.

Sligo man O’Donnell, who can play at loosehead and tighthead, left Connacht last year and played Super Rugby with the Sunwolves in Japan before moving to New Zealand to link up with Counties Manukau for the 2019 Mitre 10 Cup.

conan-odonnell O'Donnell is back with the Steelers for the Mitre 10 Cup. Source: Photosport/Marc Shannon/INPHO

His excellent performances earned him an opportunity in Super Rugby earlier this year with the Highlanders, for whom he made two replacement appearances before the Covid-19 crisis struck.

O’Donnell subsequently trained with the Crusaders and was then back with the Highlanders during the recent Super Rugby Aotearoa competition in New Zealand but didn’t feature on the pitch.

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The 24-year-old’s career will now continue with Counties Manukau, with the Mitre 10 Cup season kicking off in two weekends’ time.

The Steelers’ squad includes 34-year-old Read, who moved to Japan after last year’s World Cup to join Toyota Verblitz but is available for the Mitre 10 Cup having returned home to New Zealand when the Japanese club rugby season was shut down.

Counties Manukau have also included All Blacks tighthead prop Nepo Laulala and back row Dalton Papali’i in their squad.

Last week, Otago confirmed that Irish lock Jack Regan is part of their squad.

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